He didn’t have to, but DeMarcus Cousins made himself available to media following Sacramento Kings’ practice Tuesday afternoon. The topic of the day was none other than his spat with Mike Dunleavy Jr. and his subsequent ejection from the Kings’ 115-113 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday.
- Since he didn’t practice, Cousins wasn’t obligated to speak to reporters today. The Kings center sat out Tuesday’s workout session with a bruised left thigh, which apparently was a result of the collision with Dunleavy two days ago.
- Looking back at what happened, why did the situation unfold the way that it did? Cousins believes it has to do with how he’s perceived. “I felt like everything – the whole decision, everything – just the whole situation was based off my reputation, which is unfair,” Cousins said.
- Cousins on the collision with Dunleavy followed by his account of what was said between the two: “Actually, I was cool about it because I really didn’t know if he did it on purpose. And that’s what I asked him, I was like ‘Was that on purpose?’ and his response was ‘What if it was? What you gon’ do about it?’. And that’s what, you know, kind of got me.” After watching the replay of the play, Cousins believes that Dunleavy’s actions were intentional.
- Did the 22-year-old center know it was Dunleavy who ran in front of him to box out for position? “I knew who it was,” Cousins said. ”And after it happened, I was asking ‘Where’s Mike? Where’s Mike?’. (He) kinda disappeared though.”
- Following the initial confrontation, Cousins and Dunleavy were both assessed technical fouls. Cousins on receiving his 12th tech of the season: “I don’t even know what I got a technical for. I just asked him (Dunleavy) a question. I don’t even know why I received a technical for. So, I mean after he said what he said, I just said ‘I got you,’ and I walked away.”
- According to Cousins, the elbow to Dunleavy’s head wasn’t intentional. He claims he was just trying to get around Dunleavy’s screen on the ensuing Bucks’ possession.”It really wasn’t,” Cousins said. ”I mean, if you see the replay, it’s really not that hard as he acted out. But, it really wasn’t.” He acknowledged that the elbow came at the wrong time.
- The Kings starting center believes that winning games will change his negative reputation. He was asked if the losing is what causes his poor perception around the league. “It doesn’t help the reputation,” said Cousins. ”Once you start winning, they praise you.”
- Scott Foster was the official who tossed Cousins out of Sunday’s game. He is also the same referee who booted Cousins at halftime of the Kings’ last visit to Utah. ”Like I said, based off reputation,” Cousins said.
- Cousins and the Kings have yet to hear from Stu Jackson, the NBA’s Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations, on his status for tomorrow’s game. It’s not unusual for the league to take some time before announcing disciplinary action on its players. Does Kings coach Keith Smart know why? ”No, I have no idea,” Smart said. ”Couldn’t tell you why it takes so long. But that’s just their protocol of how they’ve gone about it. I’m sure it’s not just us. When other teams are dealing with some of the same issues, it’s always a waiting game. You know, they want to make sure everything is in order so when they make the call, then it’s the right thing that everybody has agreed upon.”
You can listen to all of Cousins’ comments at Kings practice today in the audio player below.
Can’t see the audio player? Listen here.