Kings coach Paul Westphal has mixed and matched this lineup just about every which way this season. There has, however, been one tandem he's been reluctant to use together: DeMarcus Cousins and Samuel Dalembert.
That changed over the weekend, primarily because the L.A. Lakers posed a serious challenge with two centers in Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol, but also because Cousins and Dalembert each played extraordinarily well against the Lakers and Hornets. With this team, you can't bench productive players no matter who else is in your lineup. Ergo, Cousins and Dalembert ended up spending time together on the court, with Cousins sliding to power forward.
The results were amazing, and Westphal announced Monday that the tandem will start Tuesday night against the Boston Celtics. Bully!
Against the Lakers, Cousins and Dalembert shared the court for 14-1/2 minutes. The Kings outscored the Lakers by 10 points in those minutes, and were -5 in the other 33-1/2 minutes. Against the Hornets, Cousins and Dalembert shared the court for 14 minutes, and the Kings were a +4. In the other 34 minutes of the game, the Kings were +2.
Boston has a deep and vicious frontcourt, starring Defensive Player of the Millennium Kevin Garnett. If the tandem doesn't work against the Celtics, that doesn't necessarily mean that it can't work. Boston is darned stingy.