DeMarcus Cousins Named to All-Star Team


“Boooooggggiiieeee!” as Jalen Rose and Bill Simmons would exclaim, is now officially an NBA All-Star. After finishing seventh in front-court fan-voting, and after being snubbed by the coaches, DeMarcus Cousins was added to the Western Conference All-Star Team as a replacement for the injured Kobe Bryant by Adam Silver, the NBA’s Commissioner.

He’ll be the first Sacramento Kings player to play in the All-Star Game since 2004, when Brad Miller and Peja Stojakovic were representing the team in the mid-season spectacle.

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Cousins has averaged 23.8 points and 12.3 rebounds, which place him in the top-five in the NBA in each category, in 32 games played. Along with his points and rebounds, Cousins also boasts career-highs in assists (3.2 per game), blocks (1.6 per game), and free-throw percentage (.806%). Cousins is also fifth in the league in double-doubles with 26; Pau Gasol, the leader with 29 double-doubles, however, has played in 13 more games than Cousins.

Last season, when Cousins was overlooked after averaging 22.5 points and 11.7 rebounds pre-All-Star break, many Kings fans felt slighted, but this season, it had hit even harder. When news broke that Cousins had failed to earn an All-Star selection, Kings fans felt downright disrespected, especially when it was announced that Tim Duncan (14 points and 10 rebounds per game), a sure first-ballot Hall of Famer and All-Star Game staple, had made the team. Duncan, as legendary as his career has been, is in no way, shape or form, the player Cousins is.

It was quite obvious then, that the All-Star Game wasn’t a talent-show, but a glorified popularity — and prissy — contest. By allowing the fans to vote the starters, the NBA allows viewers to send players to the All-Star Game who have no business being, not only starters, but on the team. While allowing the fans to vote, the NBA makes the game more inclusive of fans’ opinions, but that leaves players who deserve a bid to be neglected.

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  • Cousins’ production this season hasn’t wavered, even with the Kings ridding themselves of a coach Cousins had finally liked, which was a rarity in his first four seasons. Cousins’ player efficiency rating, according to ESPN, is sixth in the league, if you include players with more than 30 games played. Without Cousins on the floor, the Kings’ offensive rating goes down by 6.4, and their defense goes up 13.3, which totals a point-differential of 19.7.

    Even with the Kings in their state of confusion, Cousins has been the one constant positive to keep Kings fans sane. While some coaches and fans may not appreciate the way Cousins plays, judging him solely by his attitude, his demeanor on the floor this season has improved ten-fold. And his dominance on the court speaks for itself, not only by putting up some of his best numbers against All-Stars who were voted and selected ahead of him but by being literally unstoppable when his game is on.

    While Cousins may not be the ideal All-Star, due to whatever discrepancies, attitude issues, or just general disdain towards him, the fact of the matter is, Cousins deserved to be at the All-Star Game and Kings fans, after all they’ve been put through the past years, deserve to enjoy what little light they have on a dark, gloomy season.

    Next: To Win Games, Sacramento Kings Need More than Just Defense