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NBA Trade Rumors: Cleveland Cavaliers interested in trade with Kings for DeMarcus Cousins

Chris Grant has been open about leaving his options open with the top overall pick in the NBA Draft this summer. Could he move it for DeMarcus Cousins?


DeMarcus Cousins is a fascinating basketball player. He is young, incredibly gifted, huge, and according to nearly everyone who has ever spent any time with him, incredibly immature and disruptive. He has spent his first few years in the league infuriating the Sacramento Kings fan base and coaches. With a new ownership group, new head coach and general manager coming into power in Sacramento, there is a feeling that they might want to clean house.

According to Chad Ford of ESPN, Nerlens Noel remains atop the Cleveland Cavaliers draft board, but the significant pressure coming from owner Dan Gilbert to make the playoffs next season could lead to the team trading the pick for a proven player. Enter Cousins. Ford suggests that the Charlotte Bobcats and Dallas Mavericks could also be in play for Cousins, though neither team is likely to be able to put together a package of assets as appealing as what Cleveland could put together.

What kind of player is DeMarcus Cousins? He is a 22 year old that has had Player Efficiency Rating's above 20 in each of the last two seasons. He has the tools to be a solid defensive center, but doesn't appear interested in utilizing them. He has been suspended by his own team indefinitely, he does not shoot for a high percentage, often floating around the perimeter, and picks and chooses when he wants to play hard. He is a gifted passer and excellent rebounder. He had fewer Win Shares than Tristan Thompson did last season.

My thinking is that the Cavaliers are in the driver's seat right now, able to both take Nerlens Noel for the long-term benefit of having a core of Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, Noel and Dion Waiters, while also filling in veterans like Danny Granger and Anderson Varejao to be in win-now mode. Cousins is young, and could very well make a dynamic partnership with Kyrie Irving. I don't believe the Cavaliers locker room is strong enough as currently constructed to deal with Cousins.

There are also rumors of the Cavaliers interest in Kevin Love. It isn't happening