Here is a great video of DeMarcus Cousins and I would encourage anyone who says he has attitude issues to watch it and see what they think. It looks like he's definitely worked with his PR guy over the past couple of weeks, but it's working. He comes off as a much better prospect than he did in his interviews on DX (which I didn't think were that bad either). On to the video! And let's just say, the image at the beginning has nothing to do with how the video goes in the slightest.
If you are not a fan of watching the whole thing for 8 minutes, I'll try to give some of the "highlights" here:
- First and foremost, at the 5:21 mark, he nudges a reporter with his elbow after itching his eye and immediately and instinctively apologized.
- Very interesting point: He started late because he was playing football because he thought he would be in the NFL. He also mentioned that he was terrible and picked up basketball really quickly. I'd be surprised if this doesn't have something to do with his weight (stopped football in 8th grade). Could be his genetics as his nonsupporters would suggest, but it could be a little of each.
- He mentions that he is working out with whoever his agent says he should (he didn't ask to avoid us?)
- You can tell they are interviewing him in the middle or right after his workout, he starts out completely out of breath and then comes around after about 30 seconds or so.
- Says he is flattered to be compared to Shaq. Sounds humble about it.
- Said he is specifically working on his body and his shot (getting his shot back)
- 290lbs and 14% body fat (according to Cousins, take it for what it's worth), working on boxing for his stamina and core muscles.
- Says he is always nervous before games and workouts (possibly why he always starts out interviews a little sluggish)
- Says he "hopes" to face Favors because people are saying he is a better player and he "wants to see"
- Thinks his defense has improved (worked a lot on footwork and defensive slides)
- Doesn't have a preference to where he goes, just wants to figure out where he is going to go.
- I'd recommend everyone at least starts watching at 7:10-7:40 to hear how he talks about basketball in general (FWIW, he says something like, "I LOVE the game, can't keep me outta the game.") and a quick question about his attitude.
- Doesn't really matter much, but I found two answers interesting. Short and sweet, "Yes, sir" and "Yes, ma'am."
Anyways, I guess that's the jist of it. Really the first interview I have seen of Cousins that is absolutely in line with other prospects and better than plenty. Obviously there are plenty of guys who interview better, but this isn't bad by any means. You really have to dig deep to find things truly wrong with him here. Hopefully Kahn gives the kid a chance or Kahn won't have a chance to draft Barnes next year when we finally win the lottery. The kid oozes talent and I hope Kahn doesn't pass over him because of a bad interview and media hype (or the opposite of hype, I guess?). I pretty confident in my opinion that, unless Wes Johnson turns into a great starter and near ROY next year (or at least Cousins ends up failing... which I doubt), Kahn will be out of a job. He's already getting a bad rap and Taylor probably used up all of his patience on McHale. Kahn can't afford to wait for Rubio.
He's realizing we have no chance in FA. Fernandez for the right price is a step in the right direction. Wes Johnson isn't the answer. DMC at least provides enough of a presence that as long as he can control his attitude, he will be a productive player.
In terms of talent, Cousins is as sure of a thing as there is in the draft. In terms of attitude, even if he is the worst, the chances of him failing because of attitude are a lot lower than the chances of another prospect below him becoming a starter. Put this way, let's say the chances are about 30% that a prospect between 5-10 becomes a verge allstar (if anyone has the actual numbers, that'd be great as I know they are out there somewhere). That means, assuming Cousins is successful in terms of talent (I know, that's no guarantee either, but the man has some legit professional skills and size), there has to be at least a 70% fail rate in terms of his weight or character for us to pass on him. Do you really think it's 70%? I think it's closer to 5-10% max. And no I don't think there is a 90% chance that he becomes a star. I think there's a 10% chance he fails due to weight or character and I think it's about 80% likely that he becomes a solid starter or better if you forget that he has "character concerns." High hopes? Of course. But you'll notice that very few people are actually questioning his talent. Possibly fewer talent questions than Wall or Turner even... and that's saying something. Combine that with his size and the lack of legit big men, and he's got a solid outlook.
What do you think? Did I miss something in the interview that incriminates him?