February 2, 2011; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings power forward DeMarcus Cousins 15 controls the ball against Portland Trail Blazers center Marcus Camby 23 during the third quarter at Power Balance Pavilion. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 95-92. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE

Sacramento Kings ’11-12 First Half Report Cards: DeMarcus Cousins

Some might say I’m a loyal DeMarcus Cousins supporter – and I am, so they’d be right. I’ve been a Cousins fan since his first step on the Rupp Arena floor, but that doesn’t mean I’m blinded by my fandom.

The first half for Cousins has, well, been semi-boring actually – and that’s a good thing. He, like all Kings, started the season off slowly – his game took some time to round into shape but once it did, boy did it come full circle. In the past 30 days, Cousins has put up a gaudy 19/12/1.2/1 average and doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon.

The one blemish that continues to plague DeMarcus from a statistical standpoint however is the field goal percentage – something that’s way too low for a player of his talent level, especially at his size. Despite the fantastic numbers above, he’s only shooting 42% from the field during that stretch – 43.6% on the season. Cousins had a fantastic shooting month in January, knocking down nearly 49% of his shots to go along with his 15/11 average – but in the All-Star shortened month of February, Boogie has struggled to find the basket at the same effective clip.

Like many young players, Cousins continues to make some mental mistakes – be it ill-timed fouls or simply trying to do more than he’s capable of. Growing pains happen – expecting them to vanish in just one plus season isn’t realistic, so, while I wont give him a pass on the said mistakes – I do see growth in his game, unlike some other younger players on this squad who’ve struggled to do the same.

With a simple rating that is head and shoulders above the rest of the squad (Cousins rated at 5.1, Evans is second on the team at 2.7) – and a plus 4.6 on/off court (Evans is again second at +0.5), DeMarcus has been one of the few shining stars through the Kings first half.

At only 21 years of age, the sky is the limit for Cousins. His game has matured at a rapid pace this year – and while he still has his mental breakdowns, the growth has been welcoming. He still has a multitude of things to work on – but all things considered, it’s been a very solid first half for the Kings big man.

Cousins’ ’11-12 first half grade: B+

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