Would the Sacramento Kings actually trade DeMarcus Cousins to a division rival?
Conventional wisdom would say no way, but there is more to this trade speculation then just conventional wisdom.
However, no one is talking about the Phoenix Suns as a possible trade partner.
It's no secret Phoenix is trying to find a new face of franchise, and Cousins has star power written all over him.
On the other hand, Sacramento has grown tired with all the shenanigans associated with Cousins and may be willing to trade him.
Under-fire Kings general manager Geoff Petrie, who has overseen zero trips to the playoffs under five coaches in the six-plus seasons since Rick Adelman left town, would be willing to move Cousins, preferably in exchange for a dependable veteran of quality or two who could bring some instant improvement to a franchise stuck in lottery land and still plagued by an uncertain future in terms of where this team will be calling home in the long term.
This bodes well for Phoenix, who have a quality veteran big man in Marcin Gortat—one who has also been the subject of trade talk.
If Sacramento wants a veteran center to fill the void down low, it would be wise to consider the following trade shown in ESPN's Trade Machine (check this link to how this trade works financially).
Marcin Gortat, Wesley Johnson, Phoenix's 2013 First-Rounder, Brooklyn's 2013 Second-Rounder and Denver's 2013 Second-Rounder
DeMarcus Cousins, Francisco Garcia and Sacramento's 2013 Second-Rounder
In this deal, Phoenix gets their new face of franchise and Sacramento gets a veteran center plus multiple draft picks.
Phoenix can now pair Cousins with Markieff Morris and has a plan toward building a contender around Cousins.
Sacramento gets to focus around Gortat and Thomas Robinson down low, all the while dropping a bad contract in Garcia and securing several draft picks.
In other words, the deal works well for both franchises.
The main issue with this trade is the aforementioned fact that Phoenix and Sacramento are Pacific division rivals.
The fear over trading Cousins within the division stems from the idea that he would play the Kings multiple times a season.
It's one thing to trade him away and watch him succeed in a distant location. Watching him succeed from close up could drive management insane.
Either way, Phoenix has to be considered a potential destination for the disgruntled Cousins because of the assets they possess.