Friday 22nd March 2019,

Sacramento Kings Sending ‘Mixed Signals’ on DeMarcus Cousins Trade Front

Sacramento Kings Sending ‘Mixed Signals’ on DeMarcus Cousins Trade Front

This will-they-or-won’t-they game with the Sacramento Kings is getting kind of old.

DeMarcus Cousins is slated for free agency in 2018, theoretically creating a sense of urgency throughout the Kings organization. They need to decide whether they’re going to trade him soon, lest they eventually lose him for nothing or be forced to accept pennies on the dollar in exchange for his services.

But the Designated Player Exception in the latest collective bargaining agreement gives them the ability to offer Cousins a $200-plus million extension this summer—one the big man would be hard-pressed to turn down. The thinking for the last few weeks has been the Kings and Cousins will agree to that pact, then figure out the rest later.

According to Ailene Voisin of the Sacramento Bee, though, the team still hasn’t decided whether it will ultimately keep Boogie:

And they have to stay on message. Within the past two weeks, three different team executives complained the Kings once again were sending mixed signals. Divac was receptive to moving Cousins, while Ranadive was still meddling and still leaning toward keeping Boogie.

It remains overwhelmingly likely that the Kings hold on to Cousins. The hardest thing to do in any rebuild is secure a megastar, and they already have one. Given their recent draft-day track record, even the best pick-and-prospect package doesn’t guarantee them a future building block.
And it’s not like the Kings can’t trade Cousins later, after he’s signed the extension. If months go by and they still can’t make the marriage work, they’ll able to move him independent of an imminent free-agent threat, thereby ensuring any potential return for his services remains lucrative.

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