- Holy…Fucking…Shit… For the past several seasons we’ve endured the outright puzzling dysfunction of the Sacramento Kings front office, but this move alone will most likely go down as one of the worst, nah fuck it, THE WORST trade in modern NBA history. This is the type of ineptitude that has Billy King (Former Brooklyn Nets GM) out there somewhere just celebrating life today like he’s absolved of all of his stupidity. So lets just get into it: The Kings have basically traded their one worthwhile asset, a superstar center no less, for basically nothing. Yes, Cousins 7 years in Sacramento has produced 0 playoff appearances, numerous technical fouls, and a couple of fired coaches here and there, but not all of the blame rests on his shoulders. We know what Cousins is at this point: he isn’t necessarily the best leader, he’s emotional to a fault on the court and even hotheaded at times, he’s not the easiest player to please, etc but despite his shortcomings, he is arguably the best scoring center the game has right now. A truly versatile player who’s not only effective down in the post, but has developed a serviceable 3 pt shot in recent years. Crazy to think that the Kings management would not only be unwilling to pay the man max money, but would allow a player that typically commands a King’s ransom walk away for spare parts. Vlade Divac has to get fired….
- Now when you look at the acquisition of these draft picks, there’s a not a lot juice to these sweeteners either. For whatever reason, the Kings got cucked into accepting just one protected first-rounder in this years draft. This is laughable, because you would think trading a perennial All Star to a team severely in need at the 5 spot would warrant a future mortgaging type of offer from the Pelicans. Additionally, since the Kings are entering this rebuild with their heads cut off, it may be alarming to know that doing so through the draft will be particularly difficult. For 2017, the Kings are in a bad position with their own pick, where if they end up at 11th in draft order or worse, they give the pick to the Chicago Bulls. Additionally, due to some long con type of wizardry from former 76ers GM Sam Hinkie (this guy deserves to be a GM somewhere soon), we’ve learned that Sacramento will owe the Philadelphia 76ers a 2019 first-round pick now. As loaded as this year’s draft has been hyped to be, the likelihood of finding another franchise cornerstone outside of the top 4 prospects is minimal, and with the Kings head scratching judgment of talent these past couple of draft classes, I wouldn’t put much faith in them this time around.
- For the Pelicans, you gotta respect the balls on them to straight up steal Cousins away from the Kings, but its not all roses just yet. Before the trade, Cousins had made two things very publicly clear to the 29 other teams: that he fully intended on resigning with the Kings once his current contract expired, and that if traded, he would be highly unlikely to resign with whoever traded for him. This probably is what kept a team with better assets to exchange like the Boston Celtics wary of making a substantial offer. So with this in mind, the Pelicans must spend the rest of this season and all of next year trying to woo Cousins enough to see New Orleans as his next longterm organization. This might not be too difficult of a task however, with Cousins now being close to his hometown of Mobile, AL. It also doesn’t hurt that the league’s best center will now be paired in the front court with the best power forward, Anthony Davis to boot. If the Brow and Boogie can make it work, the rest of the league should be shook. No title runs or anything, lets not get too carried away, but if we’re talking about the 8th seed in the playoffs this year, the Warriors road to the 3rd finals in a row just got a lot more interesting.
For more deadline coverage, stay tuned on the proceedings leading up to the Feb. 23rd Trade Deadline (3 p.m. EST)