DeMarcus Cousins is at it again, which is bad news for the Sacramento Kings. Or is it just the push they needed?
Sacramento has become the laughing stock of the NBA. If they're not considered a vat of wasted potential then their owners—the Maloof brothers—are attempting to sabotage the franchise.
Kings’ DeMarcus Cousins suspended 2 games without pay for confronting Spurs announcer Sean Elliot in a hostile manner after game Friday.— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) November 11, 2012
Now, I'm not going to sit here and call Cousins a buffoon or a big man without a brain. To be honest, I respect what he was doing to a certain extent because he was "protecting'" his team and not looking out for strictly himself.
That said, he has to be smarter than that; he has to understand that as talented as he is, he doesn't command the same respect other superstars to do.
One day, Cousins might develop into a respected All-Star. For now, however, he remains a source of both potential and impulsive hostility. The latter has given him the reputation of a selfish failure, someone who will never be able to lead Sacramento out of the NBA's doldrums.
While unfair, that is reality. Until Cousins can keep his temper in check, he'll never be the leader the Kings need and the leader his team deserves.
It's time for a change.
I'm not saying that Cousins should be dealt, because he absolutely shouldn't. But Sacramento has to do something before the franchise spirals completely out of control—if it hasn't already.
The Kings once again find themselves at the bottom of the Pacific Division despite boasting a sizable amount of talent. Though they've remained competitive in most of their games, they've failed to execute down the stretch and clearly lack a proven, go-to leader, Cousins included.
Isaiah Thomas remains one of the biggest surprises we have seen in years, but young guns like Jimmer Fredette and Thomas Robinson are hardly playing up to snub. Aaron Brooks has been a non-factor and Marcus Thornton continues his poor shot-selection from the field.
Then we have Tyreke Evans, a star caliber talent by all accounts who has, quite frankly, played himself out of prominence.
Meaning? Nothing is going right for the Kings right now, hence the need for change.
But how do they shake things up? How do they right this sinking ship? How do they get out of the hole they've steadily dug themselves into?
By shopping what little trade assets they have and attempting to look outside the organization to fix what is currently is going wrong. Though Sacramento's young talent has continued to disappoint, a few of their assets are anything but untradeable.
Evans is bordering on a hot mess, but someone of his pedigree and youth is bound to be of some value to plenty of organizations. It is also doesn't hurt that according to Steve Kyler of HOOPSWORLD, the Kings are willing to move Evans should the right offer present itself.
There's also Thornton to consider. He can still score plenty, yet his efficiency continues to plummet. It really doesn't matter who is shipped, though. Only Cousins, Robinson and Thomas should remain untouchable. They're the faces of the future.
Should the Kings attempt to trade for an established veteran leader?
And yet, at the same time, that's a part of the problem. As Cousins freshly demonstrated, the future isn't now. Sacramento needs a veteran pillar to not only be the face of this franchise now, but mentor the ones of later.
This team needs someone who can keep Cousins in check, put on-court faith in Thomas and Robinson and, most importantly, who isn't a completely inconsistent head case.
The only way they'll get that, though, is by dangling what little trade bait they have, because clearly, the solution cannot be found in-house. Not right now, anyway. If it could have been, the Kings wouldn't be a bundle of chaos.
And Cousins wouldn't be forced to watch his team lose from the sidelines.