Not so long ago, DeMarcus Cousins was one of the best and most dominant big men in the NBA. His physicality, offensive skills, strength, and athleticism; made him a nightly double-double threat and one of the most intimidating guys in the league. Sadly for him, he's had to endure many career-threatening injuries over the past 2 or 3 years, and while he's looked great as of late with the Houston Rockets, it seems like he will never go back to the All-Star level he had during his time with the Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Pelicans.
That doesn't mean that 'Boogie' can't be a valuable asset for a contending team. If anything, multiple franchises should be following his situation quite closely, as he's reportedly ready to move on from the struggling Rockets as he looks to play for a championship contender.
So, with that in mind, let's take a look at the 4 NBA teams that could be a realistic destination for the Kentucky product, taking into account not only the money they could offer and how well they've fared this season but also the role he'd play.
The Most Realistic Destinations For DeMarcus Cousins
4. New York Knicks
The New York Knicks aren't exactly championship contenders right now but they've made great strides this season. They look like a playoff team and the addition of a veteran like Derrick Rose makes us think that they're ready to go all-in right now. Also, coach Tom Thibodeau has given them an identity as a tough, physical team.
The Knicks are expected to be without center Mitchell Robinson for at least 6 weeks and Cousins would slide right into the starting lineup. Moreover, there's no better place to shine than the Madison Square Garden, and leading the Knicks to the playoffs will certainly impress teams ahead of free agency if he's looking to cash in on another big contract.
3. Brooklyn Nets
This one's a bit of a no-brainer. The James Harden trade took away most of the Brooklyn Nets' depth and it's clear that DeAndre Jordan no longer has what it takes to be a starting center in the NBA. In fact, he's even lost his job to 6'8'' Jeff Green, who's not exactly what you'd call an interior presence.
While Cousins isn't exactly a rim protector or top-tier defender, he'd be an upgrade for the already intimidating Nets. Moreover, they would become an even more overpowered offensive juggernaut. They're already the team to beat out of the Eastern Conference and adding Boogie would solidify that status.
2. Los Angeles Clippers
The Los Angeles Clippers are a much-improved team from last season but they're still lacking some size. They lost Montrezl Harrell to the Los Angeles Lakers and have yet to find a bench player that could fill in that instant-offense role. Also, Cousins would give them that grit and hustle on both ends of the glass.
The Clippers look poised to put an end to their title drought this season and a Big 3 of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and DeMarcus Cousins is just a mouth-watering idea for Steve Ballmer. While he wouldn't be a starter over Ivica Zubac, he'd likely play more minutes and close games over the Croatian.
1. Los Angeles Lakers
And last, but not least, the Los Angeles Lakers would be the obvious choice for DeMarcus Cousins. He established a strong rapport with the team last season, they need an improvement over Marc Gasol, and they'd give him the biggest shot to finally win an NBA championship.
Cousins and Anthony Davis are close friends and he's also had a lot of praise for LeBron James over the past couple of seasons. Davis will be out for some time and the Lakers need a guy who can carry the load in the paint, so he'd become a starter right away. Also, when Davis comes back, we've already seen what they're capable of doing together from their time with the Pelicans.