According to Mark Stein’s Weekend Dime, which was published early this morning, former Kentucky center DeMarcus Cousins is being a bigger handful for the Kings’ coaches than they expected.
Word is that handling rookie forward DeMarcus Cousins is proving to be an even bigger job for coach Paul Westphal and his staff than expected, even after the Kings hired Cousins’ high school coach (Otis Hughley) in hopes of keeping the 20-year-old — freshly relegated to a bench role — plugged in.
One source close to the situation told ESPN.com that Cousins was fined recently for clashing with members of Westphal’s staff. I’ve also been advised that it’s not one-and-done as far as such clashes go, which has created a level of tension that — anticipated or not — obviously isn’t what the Kings need when they’re already operating at such an experience deficit on top of their serious defensive frailties.
No one doubts the potential possessed by the Kings’ precocious tag team of Cousins and Tyreke Evans. But as one veteran scout warned me during summer league in Las Vegas, when tales and hints of Cousins’ volatility and immaturity spread quickly: “It’s always risky to have two young divas on the same team.”
Didn’t take long for the Kings to find out.
Courtesy of ESPN’s Mark Stein
This is not good news for Boogie. We are a mere three weeks into the NBA season, and aside from the off-the-court issues, his numbers have also been on the decline since being moved to the bench. He scored in double figures in his first five games, averaging 13.4 points. In his last four games, he has failed to score in double figures once and is averaging just 6.5 points.
With Tyreke Evans in Sacramento, things are set up for Cousins to succeed. You do not want to fall out of favor with the coaching staff. Hopefully, this is just a little bump in the road for Big Cuz and he is able to get past it.
We’ll keep you posted.