The LA Clippers officially signed four-time All-star and one-time candidate for best center in the league, DeMarcus Cousins, for the rest of the season.
Cousins did enough to convince the Clippers organizations into adding him to the roster after averaging 6.3 PPG, 4.5 RPG and 1.3 APG in his first eight games on the team.
In their most recent game, the former University of Kentucky standout finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds with two blocks in a losing effort against the New Orleans Pelicans, 103-120.
Cousins initially played for the Houston Rockets earlier this season, where he averaged 9.6 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 2.4 APG in 37% FG in the 25 games he played in before being waived.
Now, being part of a championship contender again, the big question now is whether Cousins can be a difference maker?
Last season, the Clippers built their “super team” that consisted of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Lou Williams, Patrick Beverly and Montrezl Harrell. However, a big hole in the middle existed.
Despite having a Harrell who was a hustler and a defensive and rebounding beast, they didn’t have that big-man that is capable to score and attract defense. They also had Ivica Zubac, who averaged 9.1 PPG and 7.2 RPG in 13 games in the playoffs.
Now with the addition of Cousins, the Clippers have added to their options at the 5 in addition to Serge Ibaka and Zubac, who he will presumably play behind as the third-string center.
Although he’s been struggling with injuries for years, Cousins has career averages of 20.6 PPG, 10.6 RPG, 3.2 APG, 1.4 SPG, 1.2 BPG in 45.9% FG.
Not only that his skill as a big-man on the offensive end was one of the best in the league, capable of putting the ball on the floor and scoring off drop-offs and kick outs.
He can post-up, face-up, score off put backs, shoot from the outside and pass the ball as well. He’s also able to occasionally play bully-ball that can come in handy during chippy playoff games.
Although, we haven’t seen a lot of it in the past few years, if he’ll be able to contribute close to his season averages to the Clippers, that may be enough to take some pressure off from the rest of the LA squad.
Even this season, he showed flashes of his old form, especially in a big game for the Rockets where he dropped 28 points, 17 rebounds, five assists, and made four threes.
Of course, it’s worth noting that Cousins isn’t a great defender, especially after his big injuries. Even in his prime, he wasn’t not known for his defense. So, it’ll be a big question if he’ll be able to stop some of the best big-men out in the West like Nikola Jokić and former teammate Anthony Davis.
As of the moment, the LA Clippers are third in the West with a 43-20 record and have nine games left in the regular season. They will visit the second-seed Phoenix Suns before hosting the Denver Nuggets, Toronto Raptors LA Lakers, and New York Knicks in its next five games.
What do you think about the LA Clippers signing Cousins? Do you think he’ll play a big factor for them? Do you think the Clippers can finally have that big playoff run? Sound off in the comment section!