Sports Opinion & Analysis

DeMarcus Cousins Will Be The NBA’s Next Great Big-Man

In NBA on August 20, 2012 at 9:49 am

What do Andrew Bynum and DeMarcus Cousins have in common?

They’re both big men. They’ve both been labeled head cases. They’ve both been criticized for sometimes less than stellar efforts.

What don’t they have in common?

When DeMarcus Cousins becomes the “Second-Best Big-Man in the NBA,” he won’t stop there. 

“How you like me now?”

Watch out Dwight Howard, because in a few short years, the Call Me Maybe King from Sacramento will be the best big man in the league.

Most people will be quick to suggest Cousin’s ascension will never happen because Sacramento is too small a market to support a superstar. That the drama associated with of the team threatening to move to Anaheim, err Seattle, err anywhere else, will overshadow whatever success Cousins has on the court. That he is too big a head case to take the game seriously enough, in order to play at an ‘elite‘ level.

“Nobody understands me.”

Despite the team’s stadium debacle a few months ago, the Maloof family has “promised” they are committed to Sacramento. They “promise” they have no plans on relocating the team anytime soon, and are trying to find ways to renovate Power Balance Pavilion (which, since the Power Balance company is bankrupt, I wonder how long until a new company initiates the stadium’s “renovation?”). Until the Maloof’s break their promise, the team is Sacramento’s, and the city has a history of supporting them when they play well. Think back to the Webber/Bibby era. If the Cousins begins to perform to the level he is capable of, there is no reason why fan’s won’t flock to him and the team like Okies have to the Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the Thunder.

Kings of the small market.

Since showing up to camp a few pounds slimmer last summer, Cousins has proven his has the physical presence to play in the NBA.  Since the team acquired Thomas Robinson in the draft this year, defensive pressure will hypothetically lessen on Cousins in the post, allowing him to perform at his true capabilities (it’s always easier to score when you’re not double or triple teamed). Cousin’s sheer athleticism makes him dominant in the league.

It was his head game though, that has so far tended to get in his way.

Between demanding a trade and getting former coach Paul Westphal fired last season, Cousins has been viewed as less than team-oriented, and maybe not completely all there upstairs. This is an unfair judgement, because if anyone ever saw Andrew Bynum’s three-pointer, the entire mess Dwight Howard left in Orlando, Lewis Alcindor, Jr. (aka Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) leaving a team that won a championship, or any episode of “Shaq Versus,” they would quickly realize all big men are crazy.

“I’m actually totally normal, I just don’t talk a lot.”

And let’s be fair, it’s easy to be crazy when you come into the league as a 19 year-old, and you’re drafted to a basement dwelling team.

Yet, with an earned maturity and better talent surrounding him, Cousins can now focus solely on his game, and not the distractions that has detoured it so far. He can focus completely on becoming a better basketball player. On being dominant in the post.

And when that happens, the league better watch out.

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