I'll preface with this: no reports confirm the Kings to be actively shopping DeMarcus Cousins. But when a team sends out a press release that basically publicly insults a player, you have to think that changes are in the works. Assuming the Kings DO decide to take calls on Cousins -- which is reportedly a possibility -- here's my perspective on what Houston should do.
On the first day of my senior year of high school, my short, bulky, bald-headed history teacher cleared his throat and said, "History tells us that man learns nothing from history." He must not have been aware of his words, or else he'd have quit and taught Chemistry.
History will not predict the future, but it can often provide handy guidelines. The moment DeMarcus Cousins' trade demand went public Sunday evening, I found history to be readily available for use.
The Rockets have a history with Cousins in more ways than one. They also have an extensive trade history with his team, the Sacramento Kings. The list of HouCramento RocKings is long and diverse. If Daryl Morey rocks a T-Mobile, you know his Fab 5 features Kings GM Geoff Petrie. And we like Geoff Petrie. He gave us Kevin Martin for a backup power forward.
As for Cousins, Houston staffers know him quite well. The Rockets reportedly pursued trade avenues to acquire Cousins during the 2010 NBA Draft. There's no doubt every team gave Cousins a look, but the Rockets -- in dire need of a center -- certainly made an attempt to solve their frontcourt issues with one swift move.
The Cousins Connection doesn't stop with the front office. Rockets head coach Kevin McHale worked with Cousins during the 2011 All-Star game, so the too are familiar with each other. I'm not a gambling man, but I'd wager Cousins and Uncle McHale would make a much better fit than Cousins and Grandpa Westphal.
Speaking of Westphal, I think the Kings are making a colossal mistake. They're sticking by a replaceable coach, and in the process, they find themselves on the verge of losing an irreplaceable talent. And for what? Seriously, for what?
History tells us the Rockets know and like DeMarcus Cousins. It also tells us that Houston and Sacramento get along wonderfully. There's no reason for Daryl Morey not to be inviting Petrie out to dinner tomorrow night in order to discuss trade options. I'm not sure if that's proper trade talk etiquette, but screw it, he might as well go all out.
To address the point you've been waiting to see addressed: the risk. The gamble. The chances DeMarcus torpedos the Houston Rockets into the ground before taking off for greener pastures and repeating from these here steps. The odds the Rockets repeat history by ignoring it.
You know what? Screw those concerns, too. What if Cousins is just a bad fit with the wrong coach? What if that's really, legitimately it? We saw him at his best with a good coach at Kentucky. It's the reason why he went top-five in the draft.
As many have noted on Twitter, Cousins doesn't have any sort of off-court history. There isn't any bad record of such. It's all on the court, all on the hardwood, in the form of griping, whining and most recently, missed shots. There aren't any drugs here. No guns, no nightclubs, no nothing.
If you want to blow more sunshine up Morey's ass, here's your funnel: Boy Genius purposely hired a players coach with a personality big enough to encompass and comfortably deal with even the most nuclear of nutcases. Look at the sudden change in mentality from Terrence Williams despite barely having worked with McHale. You're telling me Morey's suddenly going to leave his chance for NBA trade redemption sitting at the doorstep?
That's right, kids. It all comes full circle. The Pau Gasol trade, revisited. We thought we doomsday had arrived at the time of the trade's destruction, and yet, as a few brave souls noted at the time, the failed trade may turn out to be a blessing in disguise. Suddenly, the Rockets remain ripe with trade assets and draft picks.
Now Morey has a chance to top his dead trade with a live catch, one not near as developed as Gasol but clearly capable of living up to higher expectations. Rookies who line up 14 and 9 every night shouldn't be ignored, especially rooks like Cousins who were thrust into the starting lineup early in their careers.
I'm not here to tell you that DeMarcus Cousins is on his way to Houston. Hey may not leave Sacramento at all, though I find that hard to believe at this point. Plus, you're all still hungover from old trade rumors -- they get old with blinding speed and evaporate at a snail's pace.
But let's keep an eye on this one and hope that something is churning behind the scenes. Cousins could be an answer for Houston's rebuilding project if the pieces fall into place. As long as the Rockets keep their heart and souLowry, I'm ready to welcome any new brothers, sisters or Cousins to town.