DeMarcus Cousins Slams James Harden: The Disrespect Started Before Any Interview

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 14, 2021

HOUSTON, TX - JANUARY 10: DeMarcus Cousins #15 of the Houston Rockets handles the ball against the Los Angeles Lakers on January 10, 2021 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Cato Cataldo/NBAE via Getty Images)
Cato Cataldo

Houston Rockets star James Harden called out his teammates Tuesday night in an effort to force a trade, but DeMarcus Cousins indicated this was nothing new.

"The disrespect started way before any interview," Cousins told reporters Wednesday. "Just the approach to training camp, showing up the way he did, the antics off the court, I mean the disrespect started way before. So this isn't something all of a sudden happened last night."

The Rockets lost their second straight game to the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday, leading Harden to state his team is "just not good enough—chemistry, talentwise, just everything."

"It is completely unfair to the rest of the guys in the locker room," Cousins said of Harden.

Harden had been seeking a trade since before the start of the season and was a late arrival to training camp. Though he has played in eight of nine games this year, he is averaging just 24.8 points per game, nearly 10 points worse than last year's NBA-leading mark of 34.3.

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The Rockets have struggled to a 3-6 mark after reaching the playoffs in eight straight seasons.

It appears Cousins is ready to move on from the eight-time All-Star:

Marc Stein of the New York Times reported Houston has ramped up trade talks and could move Harden by Wednesday, with the Philadelphia 76ers considered a likely destination.

Cousins is in his first season with the Rockets after signing a one-year deal in the offseason. He spent part of last season with the Los Angeles Lakers but didn't play a single game after tearing his ACL during the offseason.