It is difficult to watch awesome players play for historically bad teams.
Last season we had to endure the Philadelphia 76ers and their abysmal 19-63 season to watch point guard Michael Carter-Williams win Rookie of the Year (it is crazy to think they started off 3-0, including beating the Miami Heat).
It hasn’t been as bad of a situation, but the NBA has had to watch the Minnesota Timberwolves for years choose terrible draft selections (Jonny Flynn, Derrick Williams, Wesley Johnson), not make the playoffs, and see a franchise power forward in Kevin Love want to play for the Cavaliers. Even rookie Zach LaVine had the perfect reaction not wanting to play for the Wolves. (Editor’s Note: As a Wolves fan, it has been as bad)
Players who are capable of making incredible impacts on their franchises and not have the opportunity to do so because of the talent surrounding them is a sad sight to watch.
The list of players I enjoy watching that are in these situations include Anthony Davis, Trey Burke, Kenneth Faried and Rajon Rondo to name a few (one could name Andre Drummond in this list as well).
One of my favorite players, DeMarcus “Boogie” Cousins who has had minimal accolades during his time in the NBA has now been snubbed twice from the All-Star game because of the nominal impact that he makes with his franchise — it is not because of his talent.
Last season Cousins was fifth in the league in rebounding (11.7), ninth in scoring per game (22.7) and had the fifth best player efficiency rating (26.1). He also got to the free throw line 8.4 times a game.
DeMarcus Cousins compiled all of these stats for the Sacramento Kings who finished a dismal 28-54. In their division alone last year, the Sacramento Kings were 3-13.
The contract for DeMarcus Cousins expires in 2018. The once proud franchise was built off of the backs of big men. It is now dreary to see the Sacramento Kings in shambles (writing that sentence hurts me, because Chris Webber is one of my favorite
Cousins is having his career wasted away, since he is more than capable of being an All-Star in the NBA.
Unlike the famous Chris Webber, who led teams in the early part of the 2000’s, this Sacramento Kings roster has no good guard play. The best guard to play for the Sacramento Kings since Tyreke Evans’ (look how that worked out) departure was their 2011 2nd round draft pick, Isaiah Thomas. The last pick in the 2011 NBA Draft never received a fair opportunity to play and was undervalued and underappreciated. The 5’9″ guard brought offense (20.3 points & 6.3 assists per game) to a team that was dead last in assists in the NBA and 17th in scoring last season.
Now Thomas is off in Phoenix and will be playing an important part to the Suns playoff chances.
What other superstar player does Cousins have next to him?
One could say Rudy Gay, but how many times have we seen him even live up to the billing that he had when he left the University of Connecticut?
One could even say “wait on Ben McLemore” but we haven’t even seen glimpses of his greatness since he entered the league (I sure hope I am wrong about him, because he has a smooth polished game).
People can look at Boogie Cousins’ attitude (led the league in technical fouls) and blame him for the losses, but how many people would be happy when each season the team that you suit up for wins no more than 28 games a year? For the last four seasons since Cousins has been a member of the Sacramento Kings, they have posted win totals of 24, 22, 28 and 28.
The Sacramento Kings have managed to progressively go nowhere and they keep stock piling players that do not fit together (Derrick Williams, & Jason Thompson playing together, really?)
What are the reasons that Cousins has to be happy about with the Sacramento Kings franchise? He came from college playing at Kentucky for a year where he was one of the focal points on a team that made a long postseason NCAA title run.
This summer playing for the USA team will help Cousins tremendously since we can finally see him make an impact on a winning organization.
The Sacramento Kings have brought in pieces that should help their roster in the future. The development of Ben McLemore and also swingman Nik Stauskas is crucial for the Kings future backcourt success.
Since the Sacramento Kings won’t be winning anytime soon, DeMarcus Cousins has a lot to look forward to in his future including finally making his first All-Star game appearance and maybe making an All-NBA team. His talent is right there with most of the great players in the league, but the NBA cannot keep penalizing him for his situation.
Hopefully we can see Cousins end up on this 2014 USA World Cup team and finally accomplish something that he has not been able to do for the Sacramento Kings, win.
When he does, Cousins might get the notoriety and recognition that he deserves because he is a really good player.