In the blink of an eye the best team in the NBA just got even better, but what does DeMarcus Cousins’ deal with the Golden State Warriors really mean for the league?
NBA fans were left stunned after the news broke on Monday, July 2, that Cousins and the Warriors had agreed to a one-year, $5.3 million deal. The former New Orleans Pelican being added to the already stacked lineup Golden State has is great for Dub Nation, but not-so-great for fans of other teams.
The Warriors won three championships in four years and with the incredible roster that includes Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, were the favorites to win again next season. With Cousins, Golden State will at some point have five All-Stars in its starting lineup. So, any team that thought it had a fighting chance to somehow beat the Warriors likely just felt that dream slip away.
So how did Golden State snag Boogie for a mere $5 million? Well, the deal was a no-brainer since it was reportedly the only one he was offered. According to The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears, Cousins didn’t have any other offers in free agency and called his agent to discuss some options.
“I talked to a very emotional DeMarcus Cousins. Keep in mind, he had that Achilles injury right after the All-Star break and in the back of his mind, he wondered if it really was going to affect him majorly in free agency, and it did,” Spears told SportsCenter. “He told me he got zero offers. Zero offers. This is a four-time All-Star, one of the best players in the world. Zero offers. So he was certainly hurt. He said about 5 a.m. in Vegas, he got on his balcony, thought about everything, called his agent, woke him up, and started talking about different scenarios, and one of the scenarios was going to the Warriors.”
Spears continued, “So early in the morning, he called Bob Myers [Warriors general manager]. Bob, he said, was certainly shocked that DeMarcus called him and was interested in taking the mid-level exception … A little bit past 8 p.m. Eastern Time, DeMarcus Cousins called Golden State, said he was coming. He called it his chess move. He called it his ace that he didn’t expect to play but had to play.”
Will Guillory of the New Orleans Times-Picayune later tweeted that while Boogie may not have had an official offer from his former team, the Pelicans did discuss numbers with him. It’s unclear if any other teams showed serious interest in signing the center.
This deal will also have an effect on the league’s best player, LeBron James, who just a day earlier signed with the Los Angeles Lakers. It doesn’t appear that the King will have the supporting cast to be able to compete with the Warriors in the Western Conference next season. Therefore, we can most likely expect to see the defending champs hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy again.