It won’t be a while until DeMarcus Cousins finally suits up for the Golden State Warriors, but the newly acquired big man was ejected from Friday night’s game against the New York Knicks after a heated argument with Knicks center Enes Kanter.
According to ESPN, Cousins, who was supporting his teammates as he sat next to them on the bench, was ejected by referee Scott Foster after he and Kanter were caught launching verbal tirades at each other during the game. A source familiar with the situation told ESPN’s Marc Spears that the argument started hours before the opening tip, as Cousins and Kanter were “talking trash to each other” during pre-game workouts. The visiting Warriors ended up routing the Knicks, 128-100.
“Kanter and Cousins were both warned prior to the ejection about talking to the bench,” Foster explained.
“Cousins took exception to the ruling and during the timeout he was ejected for one technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct.”
While ESPN pointed out that players are usually ejected after they receive two technical fouls, the publication added that DeMarcus Cousins’ ejection was a judgment call on the referees’ part. According to Foster, it was the tone of Cousins’ words, rather than the words themselves, that warranted the technical foul and justified his ejection from the game.
The first Warriors player to get ejected this season is DeMarcus Cousins.
It's the 3rd time in the last 15 seasons that a player has gotten ejected in a game he didn't play.
The other two were Chris Paul in 2007 and Sam Cassell in 2008 (he didn't appear in a game that season). pic.twitter.com/jNLv7O63Ak
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 27, 2018
Commenting on the situation after the game, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said that he plans to “talk [things] out” with Cousins after hearing his side of the story.
“I did check with Scott [Foster]. He said he had warned [Cousins], I think he was jawing with maybe Kanter, I think, and then I asked Scott and he said [the ejection] was because he had already warned him and then he kept going at Scott.”
Earlier this year, DeMarcus Cousins signed a one-year contract with the Warriors as a free agent, ideally giving the defending NBA champions a starting lineup with five All-Star selections from the previous season. Prior to joining the Warriors, Cousins spent one-and-a-half seasons with the New Orleans Pelicans and averaged 25.2 points, 12.9 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.6 blocks per game before tearing his left Achilles tendon in January. This ruled him out for the rest of the 2017-18 NBA season and forced him out of what would have been his fourth All-Star Game.
While Cousins started practicing with his Warriors teammates in recent weeks, the 28-year-old big man still does not have a specific target return date. He is expected to miss the next few months as he continues to recover from his Achilles injury.