Report: DeMarcus Cousins Sign-and-Trade to Blazers Nixed Before Warriors Deal

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 3, 2018

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 12:  Jusuf Nurkic #27 of the Portland Trail Blazers and DeMarcus Cousins #0 of the New Orleans Pelicans exchange words during the second half at the Smoothie King Center on January 12, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. 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.  (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Sean Gardner/Getty Images

DeMarcus Cousins might have ended up on the Portland Trail Blazers were it not for Jusuf Nurkic.  

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Monday that Cousins agreed to a one-year, $5.3 million deal with the Golden State Warriors. According to Chris Haynes of ESPN, the Blazers had been working on a sign-and trade with the New Orleans Pelicans that fell through:

Although Cousins is coming off a torn Achilles that will cost him part of the 2018-19 season, most Blazers fans would likely prefer to have him over Nurkic, who regressed in his first full year in Portland. 

Nurkic averaged 14.3 points, 9.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 2017-18, down slightly from the 15.2 points, 10.4 rebounds and 3.2 assists he posted in the second half of 2016-17.

As currently constructed, it's hard to see how the Blazers can make a deep playoff run. Three of their last four playoff trips have ended in the first round.

Acquiring Cousins would've carried plenty of risk, but it also would've represented some measure of change to the roster. The offense also opens up so much more with a center who can stretch the floor compared to the stationary Nurkic.

Losing out on Cousins is a big missed opportunity for Portland.

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