In what seemed to be unlikely, the Sacramento Kings have dealt their three-time All-Star center to the New Orleans Pelicans along with forward Omri Casspi, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
Sacramento has agreed to trade DeMarcus Cousins to the New Orleans Pelicans, league source tells @TheVertical.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) February 20, 2017
In return, the Kings receive guard No. 6 pick of the 2016 NBA Draft in Buddy Hield, forwards Tyreke Evans, and Langston Galloway. They will also receive the Pelicans' 2017 first and second round picks.
Wojnarowski also reports that Galloway will be waived once the deal goes through.
Tyreke Evans will return to Sacramento, where he was drafted by the Kings back in 2010.
With NBA All-Star Weekend wrapping up in New Orleans and only four days left until the NBA trade deadline, a blockbuster trade had to top the weekend off on a shocking note.
This move comes as a surprise Kings' owner Vivek Randavide intending to keep Cousins as their future centerpiece but as of late, he changed his mind in listening to trade offers. Vice President of Basketball Operations and General Manager, Vlade Divac, also said the same, but it seems like the Kings' ownership were hesitant in giving Cousins a $200-million max deal.
With that said, Cousins is a free agent by 2017-18 season's end, and it remains to be seen what occurs in the final two months of the regular season as well as next year.
Cousins will now join forces with Anthony Davis to create a heavy-loaded frontcourt presence. For the season, Cousins is currently averaging 27.8 points, 10.7 rebounds, 4.9 assists, and 1.3 blocks per game. His new teammate, Davis, is also having a stellar season as he is putting up 27.7 points, 12 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks per game. He also scored 52 points in the All-Star Game, setting an NBA All-Star Game record, breaking Wilt Chamberlain's record of 42 points. He went on to be named All-Star MVP in front of his home crowd.
The Pelicans rank 27th in the league in offensive rating with 102.3 but rank ninth-best in defensive rating with 104.7. With Cousins added into the mix, the Pelicans offense will likely grow and their defense will likely get tougher in the low-post.
Cousins' now-Pelicans are in 11th place in the Western Conference with a record of 23-34, sitting 2.5 games back from a playoff spot. The Kings, on the other hand, hold down the ninth-seed with a record of 24-33 and sit just 1.5 games back from the Denver Nuggets, who are holding down the eighth-seed in the Western Conference.