As we all know, coming into the 2010 NBA Draft everyone was fixated on DeMarcus Cousins and his “character issues.” Many believe those issues were the reason he slipped to the Kings at number five.
Knowing they had a potential head case on their hands, the Kings quickly hired Cousins’ high school coach Otis Hughley to “babysit” the young rookie. And it seemed to be working out just fine for the Kings early on. During the off-season Cousins made a little girls dream come true, and he even stepped aside graciously when he was recently benched.
However, the “nice guy” days seem to have faded as reports are now surfacing that Cousins has been a handful to control behind closed doors.
ESPN’s Marc Stein reports:
“One source close to the situation told ESPN.com that Cousins was fined recently for clashing with members of [coach Paul] Westphal’s staff. I’ve also been advised that it’s not one-and-done as far as such clashes go, which has created a level of tension that — anticipated or not — obviously isn’t what the Kings need when they’re already operating at such an experience deficit on top of their serious defensive frailties.”
This isn’t good news for Cousins or the Kings, but it’s also too early to panic. Keep in mind, he is only 20 years old and will likely mature as the season goes on. The issues Cousins is currently dealing with are probably the result of frustration and nothing more, which is understandable (to a degree).