Three Teams That Lost out on DeMarcus Cousins
The Sacramento Kings finally traded away DeMarcus Cousins — which is still a shocker to hear. Year after year, this drama became a story of the “The Boy Who Cried Wolf” because the organization kept flip-flopping on their stance. Even more shocking about the trade is that the Kings didn’t get as much back as they should have. What really has me spinning, however, is why these three playoff contenders didn’t pull the trigger on Boogie:
In the past few years, basketball analysts and even the Celtics themselves have said all they needed was another star player to finally contend against the Cleveland Cavaliers. This was the perfect time for the Celtics to step up and get a player that could compliment Isaiah Thomas. Even though the Celtics view Jaylen Brown as being a potential two-way player in the future, the trade talks stopped because the Kings wanted the first round pick the Celtics received from the Brooklyn Nets. The way the Nets are playing this season, that will likely be a very high pick and would be crazy to give up for the talent that is coming out of this year’s draft. Also, we all know how much GM Danny Ainge loves stock piling draft picks.
This is another team that is close to contending in the East. Washington could have greatly increased their odds of dethroning the Cleveland Cavaliers with the acquisition of Cousins. This move would have made perfect sense on and off the court for John Wall and Cousins because they were teammates at the University of Kentucky. The Wizards are missing a dominant presence inside that can post up, shoot consistently from mid-range, and contains more athleticism than Marcin Gortat. If the Wizards didn’t have to get rid of Bradley Beal and Otto Porter, this would have been the move to make.
Wildcard: Oklahoma City Thunder
Lastly, OKC is a low tier playoff team that still can compete for at least the fourth seed in the West. Cousins on this roster would have been a match made in heaven with Russell Westbrook — an elite point guard who produces at the same level as Cousins. Also, this move would be for the future. People already seem to forget that Westbrook only signed for three years in OKC, with the third year being a player option. OKC is basically on the clock to bring in more talent to pair with Westbrook, or they could eventually see him walk away from the organization. Cousins would have shared the load with Westbrook and helped ease Westbrook’s extensive minutes. Both men running a pick ’n’ roll or a pick ’n’ pop would have been a lot to deal with for opposing teams.
Finally, since these three teams didn’t make a major move, it seems like they’re content about their rosters. The bad thing about that is management on these teams played it too safe to take a chance on a superstar player that was very easy to acquire. Sure, each team can make a small move for a position of need or depth to fill, but that will not make any difference against the super teams like the Cleveland Cavaliers or the Golden State Warriors. The time is now especially for the Celtics or the Wizards because the Cavs are so vulnerable on defense this season. Adding a superstar center would have made a huge impact against a small Cavaliers team.