DeMarcus Cousins was suspended indefinitely by the Sacramento Kings for ”unprofessional behavior and conduct detrimental to the team.” Kings General Manager Geoff Petrie announced in a press release.
Cousins and Kings Coach Keith Smart exchanged words in the locker room during halftime of Sacramento’s 97-85 loss at the L.A Clippers last Friday night. Smart benched Cousins for the entire 2nd half and ordered him to stay in the locker room.
The odds of the newest situation inspiring the Kings to trade Cousins are likely slim, as he is considered of as the center-piece of their prolonged rebuilding effort. But somebody with knowledge of the Kings’ plans expounded “he’s not untouchable,” knowledge the 8-18 team is struggling so mightily and all options seem to be under consideration.
Cousins also was suspended one game without pay by the NBA for striking O.J. Mayo in the groin during a loss at Dallas on December 10. Following a loss at San Antonio on November 9, the league suspended Cousins 2 games without pay for confronting Spurs announcer Sean Elliott in a ”hostile manner.” Football betting lines
”We’re trying to set a standard here, and when guys move below that standard, things are going to take place,” Smart recounted after the game in L.A. ”We’ll just move on to the next game and I’ll make some decisions from there.”
Cousins, drafted 5th overall in 2010, took responsibility for the event after the game. The 22-year-old center is averaging a team-high 16.6 points and 9.5 rebounds to go with 2.1 assists and 1.3 steals per game this season.
”What happens in the locker room stays in the locker room. But I was wrong. I was wrong,” expounded Cousins, who scored 9 points in 20 minutes. ”I’m a player that undoubtedly wants to win every night, and I’m an emotional player.
That’s never going to change. But I should not have responded back. Something was said, and I just should have stayed quiet. Is it a humbling thing? Yeah, I’m going to say that. I mean, I messed up and I apologize to my squad for responding the way that I did and I will move on from it.”
Cousins’ behavior has been well documented going back to high school and his one season at Kentucky.
He has mixed in dramatic and shocking plays with outbursts against players, coaches, trainers and referees. Cousins clashed regularly last season with Kings Coach Paul Westphal, who was fired after a 2-5 start – a move that came after he released a statement criticizing Cousins’ dedication to the team and excusing him for a game.
After Cousins’ workout over the summer in Las Vegas with the U.S. Select team, which helped Team USA get ready for the London Olympic Games, USA Basketball manager Jerry Colangelo said Cousins ”has some growing up to do.” and later added, “”He wants to mature as a person (and) as a player if he is going to have an outstanding NBA career.” Cousins later said that he was just playing hard and that rubbed some the wrong way.