Adrian Wojnarowski first broke the news that the Sacramento Kings may actually be looking to trade DeMarcus Cousins before the trade deadline. According to Wojo, the Kings and New Orleans Pelicans were in discussion regarding a trade. However, no one expected it to be done as soon as the All-Star game was over. But why the Pelicans?
What did the Pelicans offer that would’ve been better than the Philadelphia 76ers?
Unless they were willing to part with Anthony Davis, the 76ers were clearly the best choice here. Think about what they could get if there made the call to Philly. Cousins is a top 5 player in the league. He can play both low post positions and any team would be happy to have him. But, the 76ers have the most to offer the Kings and Cousins respectively.
It’s no secret the Kings are high on drafting big men. If Cousins were to be dealt that would leave the Kings with Willie Cauley-Stein and Kosta Koufos. Not to downplay their skills but combined they will come nowhere close to matching Cousin’s production. So, with that said, who can the Pelicans offer? Tyreke Evans, Buddy Hield, Langston Galloway and two draft picks. That’s good but they could have done better.
However, the 76ers could have put together a package that would take the pain away from the Kings having to play Koufos and Cauley-Stein. Imagine a Kings lineup that features Jahlil Okafor and Nerlens Noel. The both are young, talented and cheap. They have shown they can play together and if the 76ers were truly sold on Cousins they can also throw in a first round draft pick. By the looks of things, they may have theirs and the Los Angeles Lakers in 2017.
Cousins, Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons will undoubtedly be the best frontcourt in the NBA if they could steal Cousins away. It won’t be easy but if the Kings are looking to rebuild then why not turn the keys to the franchise over to Ty Lawson, Okafor and Noel? Instead they got swindled and the Pelicans just became dangerous. Now, you have Davis and Boogie with a chip on is shoulder out to prove that he Kings and not he was the real issue during his time there.
Maybe the Kings decided that committing so much money to a player that has continued to cause issues and still have not won with is pushing the boundaries of what they’re trying to do in Sac. If that’s the case then the 76ers lost out on a golden opportunity. The 76ers had a chance to speed up the process and the Kings have a chance to get quality starters back instead of being robbed by the Pelicans.