While winning an NBA Championship takes a great deal of talent and heart, it also takes a hefty handful of luck in most cases. Sure, there are a few scenarios like the mid-2000 Detroit Pistons who were able to come together as a team and be successful without a superstar, but in such a individual driven sport, winning usually comes with special talents. DeMarcus Cousins is that special type of talent. Now, don’t jump the gun here – I’m not saying Cousins is currently a piece that you could build an NBA Championship around – he’s not, but he has the talent to grow into that. It’s up to DeMarcus to mature into that game – both on court and off – and given what we’ve seen of his growth the past two seasons, there’s little reason to expect that his third campaign in purple and black wont continue that growth.
Scott – After last season, Cousins is viewed by everyone in Sacramento as a future NBA star, even if his perception around the league still may be rather negative. The big man possesses skills that make other clumsy centers salivate. Most importantly, Cousins’ attitude was exponentially better in his second year, perhaps a direct result of new coach Keith Smart. With a coach that supports him and a collection of teammates that rely on him, Cousins is set to make another huge jump in 2012-13. A 20 PPG-10 RPG, All-Star season isn’t out of the question, as Cousins continues to improve his decision making and offensive skills. He’s clearly the most valuable piece on the roster and he should continue to assert himself in clutch situations.
Marilyn -DeMarcus Cousins is a Godsend. I was a fan before he ever set foot in Sacramento. He is everything we hoped he would be. He had a few growing pains, but his record stands for itself. At 6 feet, 11 inches he is a big man. Last season he posted 18.1 points and 11.00 rebounds per game, with an efficiency rating of 20.33. He is easily the best player on the team and could become an All-Star player, if the rest of the league catches on to him. Here in Sacramento, he is our star. Many of his critics have fallen by the wayside, silenced by his record. Even nationally, he is beginning to get the recognition he so deserves. From what I have seen and heard recently, it sounds like DeMarcus has worked his butt off to be in shape this season. This should help with his speed, endurance, and finishing his baskets at the rim. He is a bright, funny, engaging, and talented man. This should be a great season for him.
Bryan – As I’ve said before, outside of a few select communities, DeMarcus Cousins is vilified. That’s not to say he didn’t bring some of it onto himself – he did – but the guy is far more than what many want to give him credit for – people just don’t want to do it. No matter how you slice it, the Kings are lucky to have a player of Cousins’ talent, despite whatever flaws he may have in his game. Talent for talent, there aren’t many who can match Cousins’ natural gifts and while it has (and still will) take time for Cousins to grow into that special type of player, he’s already shown in-depth flashes of it. Statistically Cousins is already at elite levels, though, he’ll need to improve his efficiency to take that next step. I think he’ll take big strides into doing that this season and while he’ll probably fall short of the All-Star game, simply off of politics, he’ll certainly have the numbers and game to back it up.
And with that – we concluded our season previews here at A Royal Pain. We thank you all for reading and following and can’t wait for the Kings’ season opening tip Halloween night in Chicago!