Kings’ Cousins: ‘I Know I Deserve A Spot’


VIDEO: Check out who made the West reserves for the All-Star Game

DALLAS – Kings center DeMarcus Cousins believes he is an All-Star.

“I feel like I’ve played at a high level. Do I feel like I can do better? Absolutely. But I feel like I was pretty deserving of an All-Star spot,” Cousins said Friday night prior to Sacramento attempting to break a five-game losing streak against the Dallas Mavericks.

“I don’t know what it is,” the 6-foot-11 Cousins said when asked why he thinks enough Western Conference coaches didn’t select him to be one of seven reserves. “But I know looking at it, I know I deserve a spot.”

He won’t even get to take out his frustrations on the court against a team he’s destroyed to the tune of 19.4 points and 10.8 rebounds over his career, and torched for 32 points and 19 rebounds in the Kings’ blowout win over Dallas last month. Cousins is missing his fifth consecutive game with a sprained left ankle. He said he set himself back a bit by working too hard to make a quick return. The team is now preaching patience. Coach Michael Malone said Cousins will likely miss Saturday’s game at San Antonio with a possible return targeted for Monday night’s home game against Chicago.

Two weeks later, the 23-year-old will get unwanted rest when the NBA converges in New Orleans on Feb. 14-16 for All-Star weekend. With three forwards — Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin and Kevin Love — voted in by fans as “frontcourt” starters, the coaches selected LaMarcus Aldridge, Dwight Howard and Dirk Nowitzki as reserves.

“I’m not surprised,” Cousins said dryly. “At the end of the day it’s an individual stat, so when they read you off as an eight-time All-Star, they don’t include your team’s record. So, like I said, it didn’t surprise me at all.”

That was Cousins’ way of suggesting that his personal improvement and All-Star worthy season shouldn’t be penalized by his team’s 15-30 record entering Friday’s game. He leads all centers in scoring at 22.6 (on a career-high 48.8 percent shooting) and ranks fourth in rebounding at 11.6. He’s first in steals (1.78) among centers and ninth among all players. His usage rate of 33.0 percent is the highest in the league, meaning almost everything the Kings do offensively goes their big man, who can score in the low block and step out and hit the mid-range jumper.

The league’s eradication of the center position on the All-Star ballot didn’t help Cousins’ cause. Under the traditional positional format, Houston’s Howard would have been tabbed as the starting center in the fan vote and coaches likely would have had a hard time leaving Cousins off the team as the backup center.

“That did affect a lot,” Cousins said. “But even with that being said, I still deserved it.”

The Kings got off to a rough start to the season, made a minor trade for young Timberwolves castoff Derrick Williams followed by a major deal that netted Rudy Gay. After a transition period, Sacramento put together it’s best stretch of the season with a win over Miami, a down-to-the-wire loss at San Antonio followed by a win at Houston, which they’ve defeated twice.

After disappointing let-down losses at home to Philadelphia and Charlotte, the Kings beat Portland. Soon after came the unfortunate luck of concurrent injuries to Cousins and Gay that has again made life hard on the West’s last-place team.

As deserving as Cousins believes he is for a first All-Star nod, the talent in the West simply runs too deep to squeeze on the 12-man roster. Howard and Aldridge were locks. And Nowitzki is so respected by the coaches that they weren’t going to leave him off the team after averaging 21.1 points coming off a rough 2012-13 season in which he had knee surgery and his 11-year All-Star run ended.

Until the league expands the All-Star rosters or the Kings turn around their fortunes, All-Star disappointment could continue to follow Cousins. He has a slim chance of sneaking onto the 2014 team. New commissioner Adam Silver will pick a replacement for injured guard Kobe Bryant, and a replacement will be needed for point guard Chris Paul, if he hasn’t returned from injury.

Suns point guard Goran Dragic will likely be the first player added. Dragic is having a brilliant season on the league’s most surprising team. The Suns are 28-18, yet that still couldn’t get him onto the team, another nod to the conference’s overall talent pool. If Paul is out, Cousins and New Orleans’ Anthony Davis will likely be the next two players on Silver’s list.

“It is fuel to my fire,” Cousins said. “I’ve been doubted my whole life. Nothing’s ever come easy for me. So this not coming easy is not a surprise; keep grinding and at the end of the day I’m going to get in.”

66 Comments

  1. ollie boombayay says:

    DMC is a beast and put up All Star numbers no doubt. Not just scoring either. Personally I’m impressed by Isaiah Thomas, but nobody is even mentioning him. Fans just select who is most popular, but coaches do the same thing AND always penalize players for being on losing teams. Mike Conley, Monta Ellis, Ty Lawson all having nice seasons and they will not get a mention. Dragic, Davis, Cousins are probably next in line. Cousins will have a hard time getting selected by coaches because of his attitude on court and towards his own coaches has given him a bad rep.

    Joe Johnson getting in is a joke to coach voting. He’s having one of his worst seasons on a losing team. Afflalo, Lowry, Stephenson all would have been better choices.

  2. Brandino says:

    The NBA needs to clarify what it means to be an AllStar, are they deciding it off of popularity, jersey sales, who hangs out with the other stars, who makes the most money. I know the fans vote for the starters and everyone is going to put their player on top. If you are going to have 3 players from a team make it then that team should be #1 in their conference, which states why Bosh should not be on the AllStar team this year. Noah shouldn’t be on the team, Joe Johnson shouldn’t, Paul Milsap shouldn’t. Those teams are barely winning any games and barely over .500. The Pacers should of atleast had 3 players on there maybe even 4 but it’s Indiana and noone wants to see that state on top, especially on top of Lebron and the Heat. The NBA isn’t the same anymore and it’s all about politics and who has the most money and who hangs out with Jay Z. It’s is all about commercials and what is “best” for the league and players. There are a lot of players who have lost the love for the game and it is terrible, makes a true NBA fan not wanting to watch it anymore. This year’s game will be boring and I plan on not watching it. So F-U, F-U, F-U, F-U, F-Lebron, F-Wade, F-Bosh, F-the league, F-David Stern, I wouldn’t even give a homeless person a Lebron Jersey just to put something on his/her back.

  3. Celtics says:

    who cares??? the all star game is the biggest joke ive ever seen. almost as bad as the pro bowl. instead of worrying who gets on the boring no-defense all star waste of time, we should be talking about whos winning important things like oh i dont know… maybe championships?

  4. Ricardo says:

    It is obviously POLITICS!!!! Kobe, D-WADE,C-PAUL dont deserve to be in the list. They should give other good players a chance….

  5. JJ says:

    Everybody is whining abou not making asg,,, Dragic the one that deserves it tje most from al 7 players that was choosen only said; I am sad I didn`t make it, and if the commisioner picks me I will be the happiest man on the world….
    Commisioner don`t make the same dumb mistake as the coaches did… If Dragic doesn`t make it,,, it will be a joke to the asg and will ne obvious that its bias towards non american players,,,, Dirk an Tony are another story furure hall of famers and ring holders

  6. MostValuableComment says:

    yeah demarcus you deserve a spot with the other nobel prize from indiana ,stevenson. a spot outside the all star game. like the other guy said, fans and coaches see you enough and hear you enough during the regular season.
    egocentric bullys self proclamed all star are not welcome in the ASG

  7. squala96 says:

    It’s quite a bold claim especially when Cousins’ team has only about half as many wins as losses.

  8. bodjee says:

    Wins or not, gentleman or not, Cousin is an all-star! The NBA is NOT an equal opportunity employer. Too much politicking and not enough respect for the employee! It is not fair to judge a player by wins and lost because the game is poorly officiated.

  9. Kome the Black Dumba says:

    I remember back then there was a year(?) that All -star selections player’s team should be above 500. IMO a good rule.

  10. ptguard11 says:

    the all star selection process is flawed. the starters are a popularity contest, and the reserves are picked by your adversaries . Cousins is an up and coming star in this league, but for him to be an all star in this league he must demand it and not simply expect.it. the coaches will not stroke his ego and vote him in simply because he is a marginal all star. they would have to deal with that energy surge for the rest of the season. Keep working young man, and make it impossible for them to deny you next time around.

  11. dustydreamnz says:

    If Cousins behaves for a while he’ll get his dues, damn fine player.

  12. gal says:

    its called the all-‘STAR’ game, not the all-‘PLAYERS WITH GOOD STATS’ game for a reason. you need to be a star in this league to play in it.

  13. Gameover209X says:

    Die-hard Kings fan here,

    Cousins is a monster. I Have enjoyed watching him grow as a player and person. I’m excited to watch the team get better under our new management, BUT we are last in the West. DEAD LAST. Behind a Kobe-less Laker squad non the less. I know 5 of those losses are w/o Gay/Cousins but c’mon.

    Demarcus will be an All Star. Dirk deserved it more. Howard is Howard beast, supporting Harden. Demarcus doesn’t deserve it yet. Get your wins up young man, plain and simple.

  14. Ben says:

    There are at least 10 other guys I’d have on the West All Star team before Cousins (probably more). The fact that he is complaining about being there is quite indicative of why. Sacramento would be better off without him. Who cares about his stats – any good player who goes to a terrible team and has to hold it together ends up with good stats. Winning is critical to demonstrating you are an all star. No way did he come anywhere near deserving to be on this team. And lets face it, if the West coaches were going to pick a dominant centre on a losing team, it would have been because the game is in New Orleans, and they felt the need for a home town boy, so it would have ben Davis before Cousins anyway.

    As for Lance Stephenson – he is a snub, but Joe Johnson would have been too. It was a 50/50 call. Hard to see how someone who has basically single handedly willed his team back from the dead into the playoffs is not deserving. And I really always disliked Johnson getting it when he played for Atlanta, so boring. But this time I feel like its deserved.

  15. Shawn Kemp no. 1 says:

    The King’s cousin !

  16. SixerFanEU says:

    I have a feeling that Boogie is actually Zach Randolph 2.0. I’m afraid he’s going to have to leave SAC if he wants to reach his full potential. I hope I’m wrong, because this Kings team with Thomas, Gay, Boogie, Carl Landry, Patterson… I like them, I really feel they could become every bit as good as the 1999-2002 team with Divac, C-Webb and Bibby. Just give them time.

  17. herp derp says:

    Cousins was not picked because no one wants to coach such arrogant twat

  18. nightleyooo says:

    Dirk isnt playing as half good like guys as causins and stephenson, his spot in the reserves is ridicilous and absurd.

  19. Rickey hewlett says:

    Cousin has basketball skill however all-star weekend is about sportsmanship over all. Players show case on friendly level not dominant at expense of hurting someone.

  20. kidd says:

    Cousins your one of the post players in the west skills wise the couch don’t respect you because of how you acted when you first came into the league but next to KG your my favorite post player they can’t judge you on your past behavior you was young out of college and you let your emotion play your game the first two years now you grow up and play like a grown man don’t respect you hey you don’t make all-star game this year trust me you will be there next year and now take your anger out on every post player in the west and tell them blame their coach for the way you going to abuse them man good luck with the reason of season at all-star break we going look like a whole new team and get out last place with a chance to make it into playoffs

  21. Rome says:

    Joe Johnson??? Really????

  22. relj says:

    Although, he is a good player at his position. There are two reasons he did not make the all star team. Injury and consistency in winning ball games. The kings are and will be the laughing stock of the NBA. Until they can be consistent in winning.

  23. kevin says:

    and joe johnson….still trying to wrap my head around that one..nets are painful to watch

  24. kevin says:

    its a joke dwayne “no back to back” wade is an all star…miami get 3 players selected to all star..the they been playing….they should be lucky to get one

    • kek says:

      Lucky to get one? haha the best player in the world plays there, youre just a hater, and bosh is an allstar, since wade went down for alot of games, he stepped up and won games for miami.

  25. Dimmed Star says:

    Cousins and Stephenson are crying because they were not selected. Of course NBA coaches were right, they are not an All Star.

  26. Durantula says:

    I think that one of the reasons Stephenson and Cousins got left out of All-Star game could’ve been because of the coaches’ impressions of their attitudes as being immature and rash (Cousins) or as being immature and a show-off (Stephenson)

  27. The Voice In The Distance says:

    DeMarcus Cousins is mostly a victim of team record. Many media pundits put great emphasis on this when choosing All-Stars and probably coaches do too. There’s quite a few players who have a case for being there, Cousins being one along with people like Lance Stephenson, Kyle Lowry, Anthony Davis & Goran Dragic while players like Joe Johnson, Kyrie Irving, Dwayne Wade and by far the worst Kobe Bryant thanks to both fans and coaches not deserving.

  28. BBall Fan says:

    A player that gets 20-10 but has a .33 winning percentage shouldnt be named an all-star. Do you guys remember Corey Magette? Monta Ellis? Jason Richardson? guys averaging 24+ a game and did not make the team.

    Jason Richardson was a 24+ ppg player in a losing team, then was traded to a winning team and guess what, produced only about 16+ ppg. Having nnumbers on a bad team means you are the best option they ahve, and its not a great one. Having numbers on a winning team means you are the reason you are winning, THAT deserves an All-Star nod. Would Demarcus be averaging that many points, in, say, the Thunder? no.

    • Anonymous says:

      How bout carmelo? Kyrie? Even love? You make a good point, but then we have these stars on below-.500 teams making the cut. I just don’t get it

    • Rome says:

      On the other hand MJ averaged 32 ppg in a season that he was an all-star but his team only won 30 games that year. Paul Pierce averaged 25 in a season when they only won 33 games and was an all-star. All about popularity!!!

    • kek says:

      No he wouldnt because if he were on the thunder team he would no longer me the best player, but demarcus is an allstar player, He is with out a doubt the most skilled big in the nba, but I would still pick nowitzki, aldridge and howard ahead of him until he wins more games,

  29. JZ says:

    Bosh should not be an all-star. They could have given another spot to a more deserving player like Kyle Lowry or Lance Stephenson. Bosh’s only stat that stands out is he is the league leader in riding his teammates coat tails for wins.

    Record should matter to a degree for these selections. Why give a spot to a stat stuffer if the team is terrible, and the players presence doesn’t make them a competitive team. The Kings record (like Cousins humility) is so poor that it can’t be overlooked.

  30. willie says:

    DMC, again with his “i deserve this and that” entitlement attitude…. tsktsk…

  31. jonathan says:

    anthony davis deserve to be there more than him. he might even be a legit defensive player of the year after roy hibert. Also dragic deserve more than him too.

  32. CuzFan says:

    Cousins is definitely the best center right now. I don’t know the All-Star game is always a popularity contest since players like Bosh and Wade are included in the roster. Wade is great player but he was out for a significant amount of games which should prove that players more deserving like Kyle Lowry or Lance Stephenson could’ve made it in. I also would rather have Cousins over Nowtizki because they should be including the new stars of the league not some veteran who already had All-Star experience. All-Star 2014 = based on popularity not skill (and winning for some reason)

  33. JohnPaul says:

    start winning first, coaches and fans will not see you if your team is always losing even you are the main scorer in that team. People do not losers. Start looking for a championship team like Miami, houston etc..

  34. Elton says:

    DeMarcus Cousins is the best player at his position but hes not going to be n the all-star game is wrong. This si the first time I seen the best player at his position not making the all-star team. I like Anthony Davis, Goran Dragic, Lance Stepheson, and so on.. but those guys get school when they play agiants good players at their position. Cousins dominated night in and night out and shutting his opponents down. Cousins is making Howard and Hibbert average 8pts and 5rens when they play. While Cousins goes for 30pts 15rebs. Cousins not making the all-star is total BS.

    • Elton says:

      Another thing, I don’t care if the team is 0-82.. If your making opponents at your position looking like little kids who still wear diapers… you should be in the all-star. Night in and night out, he’s making all the big men in the league looking like elementary school kids… a lot of these coaches need to look closely at Cousins game. He’s getting double, triple, and the game plan is to shut Cousins down, but it never work. Never work b/c the guy is too good. Just watch every game the Kings play, who ever is at the 5 spot on the opposing team will get school.. any team and every game…

      • MrNBA says:

        LOL! If you’ve got a team that’s 0-82, none of your players shouldn’t be in the NBA even if your best player averages triple figures!

      • Sharpie says:

        Yeah I’ve watched a lot of Kings games and I don’t see Cousins schooling people and making them look like little kids. Honestly the main reason Cousins stats look so good is because his team isn’t really that good. The guy shoots under 50% when he’s supposedly “dominating” other 5’s? That’s a joke. The Kings have guys on their team playing big minutes shooting under 40% which is terrible. Seriously every Kings game I’ve watched this season has been Isaiah Thomas trying to score points or win the game because Cousins is unable to go out there and do it. Honestly I would say Cousins is probably the 3rd best player on the team. That being the case why would you think he deserves to be named to a 12 man team with the best of the West?

      • Elton says:

        WoW, you guys obviously don’t watch the kings play. I bet you will not even find a single game that another centers have better games while playing the kings this season. I mean it minus those 5 games Cousins did not play. Everygame Demarcu Cousins play, He always and I mean always outplay other centers. This include every big men in the league.. from Tyson Chandler, D-Howard, Roy Hibbert, Al Jefferson, Andrew Bogut, Anthony Davis and so on……..??? You will not find a single game.. That’s my all-star right there.

  35. KingLBjBoy says:

    Haters gonna Hate lol

    lance????ur kidding ryt?

  36. joe says:

    Bryant said he would sit to let deserving players a chance. I understand that as he sits, they pick a 13th guy.
    Dragic or Cousins, for me.

  37. jdub455 says:

    no you dont sorry… as talented that cousins is, he still cant be an all star… maybe next yr if they would be a playoff contender cause, gay would be first on the ballot b4 him… its in the way he conducts and markets himself to fans and the media (and of course the coaches)… its about respect sometimes… hopefully nxt time man, coz you definitely hav all the tools to be an all-star…

  38. BBall..Fan says:

    Last time I checked the playoffs were the reward for being on a winning team. All you dumb coaches that started this “reward winning” with your votes are the reason why Super teams started being formed. All-Stars have to team up to be All-Stars now. One All-Star on a below average team cannot make it because of you. As for Cousins there are only 7 players on the entire All Star roster that deserve to be there more than him. That leaves almost half the team that does not.

    • What did I just read? says:

      LOL “THAT” is the reason why all stars team up with all stars??????
      You must be right, it’s common knowledge that every player’s goal is to get into the ASG, who cares about rings right?

    • Lol says:

      how stupid are you? the reason super teams started getting together is so they can get on an all star team? seriously did you go to a school to be this stupid or are you just very talented?

    • Jay says:

      Dragic is leading his “on paper well below average team aka voted to be the last in the west before season started” to a respectable 6th place in a tough west, and all while not having Eric B. active… Dragic isnt on the team but Cousins who has Gay with him, whose team is 1:2 (L:W) and who is known all around the league as an immature player who causes trouble ,deserves it more than Dragic ? Come on now, get real…

    • MrNBA says:

      A ‘super team’ was formed because three cowardly free agents secretly got together and took a short cut to the championship. And pathetic that it wasn’t even good enough. They needed another coward to help them win the 1st time and another coward to help them win the 2nd time.
      Now about Cousins. You cannot reward mediocrity. It’s that simple. Otherwise they might as well choose the best player of the lowliest team the league MVP. If they were anywhere near the top 8 in the West then maybe. But right now they’re last in the conference, lower than the injury-depleted Lakers.

      • Durantula says:

        So, if you were in Lebron’s place you would’ve stayed in Cleveland after 7 years of failure with Antawn Jamison as your 2nd best player. Or if you were Chris Bosh and went through 7 years of failing records and getting ousted in the first round, you would still stay in Toronto with Andrea Bargnani. Yeah, right……

      • Kome the Black Dumba says:

        @MissNBA When you mention Coward is that Drexler joining Olajuwan for a ring? Or Barkley and pippen joining Houston for a ring? Or is it KG and Allen joining Pierce for a ring? Or Payton and Malone joined the Lakers for a ring? There’s lots of cowards I lost count.

      • Harris says:

        Any team still have to go through the playoffs to win so there is no shortcut, even for a “super team”.
        Since when is signing free agents “cowardly”? Are the Mavs cowardly for signing Ellis, Calderon and Dalembert in the offseason? The point of free agency is so that good players aren’t stuck forever on a bad team and can choose to leave the team if they want to.

        About Cousins… Since when is having the 6th best PER mediocre? Cousins is a potential All Star candidate because he is one of the best players in the NBA, NOT because he is the best player on his team.

  39. rbx says:

    I’m a Kings fan, I agree Cousins are putting good numbers but team is not performing well, last in the West. Dragic, Stephenson should have been all-stars though not Bosh.

  40. Robo1212 says:

    When your team has twice as Many L’s as W’s and you’re known around the league as a loose cannon, coaches ain’t gunna vote for you… Stop whining and start winning.

  41. Old School says:

    Lance who?

  42. jtits says:

    Ofcourse not.. hell dont know!!!!!!! feeling star

  43. miami says:

    boooo!!!!

    • JD says:

      @Miami: i don’t know why Bosh and DWade is an all star….DWade hardly play this season(missed 13G) due to injury so i don’t think he should be an all-star BUT if he is healthy it’s a no brainer that he will be there…But Bosh? ‘common that’s a joke!!!

      • Sharpie says:

        Really?? You say D-Wade doesn’t deserve to be an all star because he missed 13 games, yet you don’t say anything about Kobe making the all star when he hasn’t even played 13 games. That’s the joke. Fact is Cousins doesn’t deserve to be an all star. There is a huge difference between an all star and a good player. When your winning percentage is below .357 when you play Eastern Conference teams your not too good. All Stars impose their will on the opposing team, not put up decent numbers than walk to the locker room with their head hung down low. If Cousins wants an all star appearance he needs to get his team out of last place in the West and out of the bottom 15 of the NBA. Heck you could even make a case that Kobe deserves to be on the all star team above Cousins. I’m sure Kobe does more for the Lakers chance to win by sitting on the bench than Cousins does playing for the Kings.

  44. Patty says:

    Cousins, You are right, you deserved to be on the all star team, coaches got it wrong.

    They should have chosen you and Lance Stephenson.

    Lance Stephenson, please donot become mad. You will be an all star one day.

    • BBall Fan says:

      Lance Stephenson is not an All-star by any stretch. He’s a good player but not a friggin star, are you guys kiddin me.

      • Gabriel MildS2ven says:

        Lance Stephenson had the most triple double this season. His stats ain’t “all-star” in the traditional sense, but neither is Hibbert or even Joakim Noah or Joe Johnson. His stats are better than Joe Johnson, and he’s basically running the offense on the top team in the NBA right now.

        In the horrible east this year, Lance’s stats and impact is nothing less than all-star, he was snubbed for some very odd reasons.