Earlier this week, Shaquille O’Neal became a minority owner of the Sacramento Kings, and started his mentorship of DeMarcus Cousins. The two had dinner together, as you can see in DeMarcus’ Instagram picture above, and Shaq told the media yesterday that they’ve already started having “conversations”:
“When I look at DeMarcus Cousins, I see a young Shaquille O’Neal. A guy that was very talented, very stubborn in his ways, and like to do things his way. And sometimes he gets a bad rap, but what changed me and what made me become a winner and a champion was a conversation. It wasn’t about running up and down, it wasn’t about repetitions. When I had a conversation with a guy that was a champion, it changed my whole perspective. That guy was Phil Jackson. Before I met Phil, I was all over the place. I was doing great movies such as “Kazaam” [laugh], I was doing rap albums, I was just all over the place, but then I had a conversation with Phil.
My job with DeMarcus is not going to be about teaching him moves, it’s going to be about having conversations. We’re going to build the team around DeMarcus. He needs to understand that when you’re the leader, the others will follow when they see you make the perfect example. He’s going to have to play on every play and accept that leadership role. That’s a conversation I’m going to have with him, and the conversations have already started. He’s a very intelligent kid, he’s a bright kid, and he hates to lose. When you hate to lose, sometimes you can’t control the things that you say, or the things that you do. That’s called passion. I like his passion. We have to control that passion and make it a passionate fire.”
DeMarcus is expected to sign his max contract with the Kings in the next week. I can’t think of a better mentor for Boogie than Shaq, but come on Shaq, let’s not nix the possibility of a “Kazaam” sequel starring Boogie…