Far removed from his best playing days, DeMarcus Cousins is still proving to everyone he still has what it takes to compete at the top level. Does he think he’s a future Hall of Famer, given how his career turned out? Absolutely. And he used a Sacramento King legend to prove his point.
Remembering Sacramento days
DeMarcus Cousins was the 5th overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft of the Sacramento Kings. He did play there for seven years and had some of his best days playing for the city. Fans quickly forget how promising he was wearing the Kings jersey because Cousins had been a journeyman in recent years. At that time, the front office lacked vision and stability, which hurt his chances of helping the team achieve something special.
He averaged 21.1 points and 10.8 rebounds while playing in Sacramento. Cousins was also voted as an All-Star three times during his time with the Kings. Looking back, the burly center revealed in an interview with Andscape that he would have done things differently in the days leading up to the draft night.
“I would’ve skipped my draft workout [in Sacramento]. What did Sac do for me? Besides, say my name [draft day]. I did more for them than they did for me. That’s just being honest. Just being 100% honest. I had two owners, three GMs, seven coaches in seven years.”
It’s his not-so-subtle way of saying he regrets playing for the Sacramento Kings and would have played elsewhere. Things happened for a reason, and now he is reunited with his former coach, Michael Malone, with the Denver Nuggets. Had the Kings opted to keep Malone instead of firing him, it would have been a different story. However, even if he low-key regrets playing for the Kings, Boogie still wants to be honored and have his jersey retired there. He is hoping to make the Hall of Fame, too.
Comparing Vlade Divac and Cousins’ numbers
Even though Cousins played for different teams in the last few years, he knows his value is still up there among all-time greats. When asked in the same interview if he thinks he should be in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame someday, there’s no doubt in Cousins’ mind.
“Vlade Divac is in the Hall of Fame. … Look at his [career statistics] and look at mine. We’ll leave it at that.”
Vlade Divac was named to the Hall of Fame in 2010. He played in Sacramento for six seasons and averaged 11.4 points and 7.8 rebounds. Vlade played his best years while suiting up for the Purple and Gold when he averaged 12.2 points as a Laker. If we are to mention his career numbers, they still pale in comparison to Cousins’ numbers. So DeMarcus might have a point there. If Vlade Divac got in with his pedestrian numbers, the Denver Nuggets center should be in too, someday, given his superior career averages.
Vlade Divac probably got in because he paved the way for other European players to make it in the NBA. He served as an inspiration for the younger generation and became an ambassador of the sport. Even though his numbers were considered average, his impact on the international basketball community cannot be undermined. In this regard, Divac deserved his spot in the Hall of Fame while Cousins should think about how he can propel the game forward instead of jumping teams and collecting an insane amount of technical fouls. Cousins missed some great opportunities in his career because of his behavior, but now is once again having a meaningful role on a team that is aiming for success in the playoffs.