NBA trade rumors once again report some familiar news about DeMarcus Cousins and the Sacramento Kings. One day the Kings are ready to shop Cousins and start a major rebuild for the future. Then the next day Cousins is off the market and the Kings are ready to offer him a long-term extension. It’s a “game” that the front office in Sacramento seems to play during every NBA season.
A report by the Sacramento Bee indicates that opposing general managers are getting tired of the conflicting messages. The problem is that Kings principal owner Vivek Ranadive wants to work out the drama with Cousins and keep him on the roster, while general manager Vlade Divac is trying to move on from the Cousins era. It’s never good when ownership and the guy in charge of the roster aren’t on the same page.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the front office of the Sacramento Kings had recently expressed interest in giving DeMarcus Cousins a contract extension worth roughly $200 million. Almost immediately after that, there were NBA trade rumors that the Kings were ready to deal Cousins and move in a different direction. The back-and-forth internal debates of the Kings have started to wear on executives around the league, which should also indicate a high level of frustration for the fans who have stood by the team over the years.
Cousins is again putting up great numbers for the Kings during the 2016-17 NBA season. Through 50 games, he is averaging 28.1 points, 10.6 rebounds, and 4.7 assists a night. Those would be the best numbers of his career, showing why Cousins continues to be an All-Star in the Western Conference. There aren’t very many players in the league who can score 20 points and grab 10 rebounds every night, but Cousins has been able to do it for his entire career.
This season Cousins has even improved his three-point shooting percentage to 36.7 on roughly 4.7 attempts per game. Though he may be the source of some off-court drama in Sacramento, Cousins isn’t the reason that the team is once again near the bottom of the current NBA standings. Heading into Sunday (Feb. 5), the Kings are just 20-31 on the season, but still within a few games of the final playoff spot in the West.
The Kings trail the No. 8 seeded Denver Nuggets (22-28) by just two-and-a-half games. Neither team has been very impressive lately, showing that the Kings could easily move up the standings with a winning streak. Being that close to the postseason could be having an impact on Vivek Ranadive, because it may have convinced him to hold on to Cousins for too long. Can the Kings succeed without Rudy Gay though?
Gay was lost for the season to a torn Achilles tendon, taking away the second-best player on the active roster. That injury alone sparked quite a few NBA trade rumors about DeMarcus Cousins and how the franchise might finally need to pull the trigger on a deal. Cousins still remains in Sacramento, though, where he has played during his entire seven-year NBA career. For most of that time, his name has come up in league chatter, with the front office even actively shopping him at different points.
The NBA trade deadline arrives on February 23, giving the front office and ownership of the Sacramento Kings a bit of time to make a real decision about the future of DeMarcus Cousins. For his part, Cousins makes about $17 million this year and then about $18 million next year in the final season of his current contract. That’s not a lot of team control for another franchise, but there would be no shortage of NBA teams expressing interest if the Kings can finally make that decision and set a deadline for when they would trade the All-Star center.
[Featured Image by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]