DeMarcus Cousins made one of the biggest headlines of the 2018 NBA offseason when he agreed to sign a one-year, $5.3 million contract to join the reigning NBA champions, Golden State Warriors. Cousins’ former teammate, New Orleans Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis, revealed in an interview with Bill Reiter on CBS Sports HQ that he was a “little shocked” when he learned that “Boogie” headed to Golden State.
“Of course I was a little shocked, but I know DeMarcus,” Davis said, via CBS Sports. “And he made the best decision for him and his career at that time — and for his family. I understand it’s a business, of course, I definitely would have loved to keep going but at that point, I’m not sure what was going on with his situation or what was going through his head. It’s a lot, coming from being traded and then feeling like you deserve a max contract and then you… rupture your Achilles.”
DeMarcus Cousins revealed that he didn’t receive any significant interest when the 2018 NBA free agency started, making him decide to call Warriors General Manager Bob Myers. Most NBA teams weren’t willing to take a risk since Cousins is still recovering from an Achilles injury which is expected to sideline him until January. During the 2017-18 NBA season, the Pelicans offered Cousins a contract extension, but not the max deal the All-Star center expected.
— CBS Sports NBA (@CBSSportsNBA) July 25, 2018
The Pelicans expressed less interest in re-signing DeMarcus Cousins after seeing the team establishing a better performance without him on their roster. Despite losing Cousins to injury, the Pelicans managed to finish sixth in the Western Conference and swept the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the playoffs. Anthony Davis may have lost a very reliable teammate, but he said that he is happy for Cousins, adding “now he has to guard me instead of us playing with each other.”
Now that DeMarcus Cousins is playing for the Warriors, Davis and the Pelicans will be having a tougher challenge in trying to fully dominate the Western Conference next season. Cousins could miss the most of the 2018-19 NBA regular season, but he is expected to return 100 percent healthy in the playoffs where the Warriors will be needing him the most.
In the last four years of dominating the West, the Warriors’ only weakness is the center position which they succeeded to address with the addition of Cousins in the recent free agency. The Pelicans may have performed better without Cousins on their roster, but letting him join the reigning NBA champions will undeniably give them a huge headache next season.