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It’s not looking good for DeMarcus Cousins on the free agent market…

(Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)

(Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)

Before DeMarcus Cousins’ Achilles injury in January of 2018, the former Kentucky center was expected to be one of the biggest free agents on the market going into last offseason. Averaging 25.2 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 5.4 assists per contest with the New Orleans Pelicans during the 2017-18 season, Cousins was guaranteed to earn a max contract.

After tearing his Achilles, Boogie decided to bet on himself in free agency last summer, opting to sign with the Golden State Warriors for roughly $5.3 million. In his mind, he could take his time in the recovery process, return to the floor around Christmas, dominate the rest of the season, win a ring, and hit free agency as a max-level talent.

The first two steps of that went according to plan, and he came close to following through with the third. In 26 minutes per contest, Cousins averaged 18 points, nine rebounds, and four assists in his last 11 regular season games for the Warriors.

And then in the very first series of the NBA Playoffs, Cousins tore his left quad, keeping him out until the NBA Finals. When he returned, the former Wildcat had a positive +/- finish just once in six games and proved to be a liability more often than not on defense. He couldn’t even get a ring out of the deal, as the Raptors defeated his Warriors to take home the Larry O’Brien Trophy.

Now, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Cousins has little-to-no market as a free agent.

“There’s not a market for him,” he said on ESPN late last night. “I think he hoped a big market team would strike out [with other top targets], they’d have cap space, and he could get a one-year, 12, 15, 18, 20 million-dollar deal. That’s not happening. I don’t even know, the mid-level exception he got with Golden State last year, I don’t think that’s there for him.”

Upwards of $2.5 billion has been thrown around in just two days of free agency, leaving very little cap space up top. As of right now, the Los Angeles Lakers have $32 million remaining, but they’re reportedly saving it all for Kawhi Leonard. If Leonard decides to stay in Toronto or sign with the Los Angeles Clippers, who can potentially create roughly $37 million, the Lakers will have to use that money to fill out the rest of the roster. They do, after all, only have four players currently signed on for next season. Is that a fit?

Elsewhere, Dallas has $22 million remaining, followed by Atlanta with $14 million, Philadelphia with $7.7 million, Indiana with $5.3 million, New York with $3.7 million, and Sacramento with $2.8 million. No other team has more than $2 million available.

With all of those franchises already having starting-level talent at the center position, Cousins’ best bet may be to take the veteran’s minimum with a contender on another prove-it deal before hitting the market again next offseason.

No matter where he ends up and for how much money, you can’t help but feel for the former Wildcat. After being right on the cusp of a max contract, Cousins has had an unbelievable string of bad injury luck.

Here’s to hoping Boogie can find the right fit with a team in the very near future and get back to elite status next season.


Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

20 Comments for It’s not looking good for DeMarcus Cousins on the free agent market…

  1. UKinIN
    1:08 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    Over the years DeMarcus has brought a lot of negative attention on himself but this is unfair and unfortunate.

    • Cletis75
      8:10 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      D-mac is a presence inside, can hit the 3, and can run the floor. He is a top 10 big man in the league. His best bet is to sign a 1 year deal, prove himself over a season and sign a max deal. He is better than Horford, all he has to do is prove it and collect his cash.

  2. Saul T. Nuts
    1:27 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    This is insane. He’s one of the best big men in the game. Sure, he’s had a couple of injuries, but how can he not get paid?

    • J-Dub421
      1:41 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      Agreed. He’s an All-Star.

    • DelrayCat
      1:53 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      Was…was an all-star. I think his attitude issues are a factor as well. However, he will find a team for the vet minimum. He can hang on for 4-5 at least more years at that level.

  3. maildad
    1:47 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    Hopefully he can sign another 1yr deal and have a positive year. Play his way back to 20pts 10 rebs a game and maybe the injury questions won’t be there next year. He’s an all star to me but needs to be healthy and go play and make a positive impact on a team with no drama

    • DelrayCat
      1:54 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      He needs to lose 20 pounds and get in the best shape of his life to really ever get back to where he was.

    • Bluebloodtoo
      11:02 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      ^^ These guys ^^ are on to something…

  4. Smyrna_Cat
    2:02 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    Injuries are a factor in the NBA. Look at Isaah Thompson … 2nd team all NBA player for Denver last year on a 2-million contract.

    Boogie just needs to get healthy.

  5. Philthy
    2:26 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    I will never criticize a player for getting as much money as they can as soon as they can. You never know what is going to happen.

  6. Tom Bombadil
    2:35 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    I’ll tell you what I noticed about Boogie during the playoffs and finals. These are not just a few little injuries, an achilles is a major injury! I noticed he was way slower and he has no lift, he has no more hops like he did before. He’s now a different player, he has to outsmart people now by getting good position etc. But he can’t jump like he did and is extremely slow compared to how he was the past 10 years. If I noticed it, you better believe all the general managers across the league noticed it as well. Don’t fool yourself by saying it’s his attitude and a few injurys. Best of luck to Boogie we love you big guy! Go Cats!

  7. Bluebloodtoo
    2:51 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    2 muscle tears in less than two years for just him? That doesn’t seem right. Several other players had them too. What’s up with all the muscle tears in the NBA lately?
    He definitely has talent and can help a team even if it’s as a role player, but he’s not going to get Big contract this year with all the risk he has associated with him.

  8. RAGE
    3:17 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    I think he will be much better this year… Like most athletes after an injury like an Achilles year and a quad tear.. Sometimes it takes a couple season to come back from them both mentally and physically… He may never be as explosive as he once was but I think he really bounces back this year and shows major improvement and if he stays healthy will get a good contract maybe never a max but will be ok

  9. jacksen23
    3:25 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    I’d like to see him go to Indy

    • ClutchCargo
      4:00 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

      Me too. But as a visiting Celtics player. 😉

  10. zoupman
    3:45 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    Someone is likely going to get a bargain. If he can come close to where he was, he will be an asset.

  11. beauleonard
    6:29 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    That crazy, give him another offseason to get his body right and he’ll be back to his old form.

  12. sivart88
    7:43 pm July 2, 2019 Permalink

    Prayers for boogie and his fam….boogie does great things in the community He’s not selfish with his money he deserves it. Here’s to praying boogie ends up back on top….he’s came to far and matured to much to watch his dreams dwindle!!! I hope lakers pick him up and can offer bigger contract next year

  13. ShooterMcGavin
    8:32 am July 3, 2019 Permalink

    Why keep calling the man Boogie when he doesn’t want the nickname?