It wasn’t always pretty, but Team USA went 8-0 in Rio during the 2016 Olympics and came home with the coveted gold medal.
The Olympics weren’t particular kind to former Wildcat and Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins, but despite the highs and lows during those eight games in Rio, Boogie said he’s up for the Tokyo games in 2020.
Boogie spent two weeks struggling to adjust to a different style of basketball, often, failing to get the benefit of a whistle from referees and fouling out fairly quickly.
Cousins even lost his starting slot in favor of DeAndre Jordan, who adjusted better to the international game. However, when the win was on the line during the gold medal game against Serbia – Boogie came to play; racking up 13 points and 15 rebounds – his most productive game of the tournament.
Team USA would go on to squash Serbia in an impressive 96-66 win. Now, Cousins, who turned 26 during the 2016 games said he wants another shot to represent USA again.
“I’m open to (coming back to Tokyo in 2020). I’ll be older then, so it depends on how my body feels. As of right now, where I’m at, absolutely, I’m open to it,” he told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe yesterday. “I think people don’t understand how hard this winning is). They see the guys on the roster and they think automatically, they’re supposed to win. This (international game) isn’t our game. This isn’t the way we play. This is an adjustment for every guy on the roster.”
Cousins said, despite some difficult games, his experience in Rio was extremely positive and pushed him to adapt and grow as a player and teammate.
“It’s all worth it at the end of the day,” Cousins told the Globe. “All the B.S., everything we went through. Everybody went through their own little type of adversity. This is the best feeling ever, honestly. This is the best feeling ever.”
Plagued by foul trouble throughout the Olympics, Boogie finished the games with and average 9.1 points and 5.8 rebounds in just 14.6 minutes per game versus his 2015-2016 NBA season average of 34.6 minutes, 26.9 points and 11.5 rebounds.
In true Boogie fashion, when asked if his time as an Olympian and his gold-medal run improved his image and perception, Cousins quipped:
“I’m not worried about it, man. I am who I am. You can either love it or hate it. I’m comfortable in my skin.”
Gold medal or not, Boogie gonna do Boogie.