USA TODAY Sports
Breaking: DeMarcus Cousins thinks he did nothing wrong on Monday. In other news, water is wet.
Would you be surprised to learn that DeMarcus Cousins believes he is being unfairly targeted after elbowing Mike Dunleavy in the head on Monday? Would you be surprised to learn that a coconut cream pie contains coconut?
Cousins said the elbow wasn't "really" intentional.
"If you see the replay, it's really not as hard as he acted it out to be," Cousins said. "It really wasn't."
So if the elbow wasn't meant for Dunleavy's head, what was Cousins doing? Did he know Dunleavy was there?
"I was just trying to get around the screen," Cousins said.
If there was no intent, was it just a coincidence the elbow came right after Cousins confronted Dunleavy?
"It was really bad timing," Cousins said.
That was funnier than any joke told during The Oscars. (Note I didn't watch The Oscars, but I know Elite Comedy when I see it, and DeMarcus Cousins is a purveyor of Elite Comedy.) In Jason Jones' story, Isaiah Thomas actually chuckles at Cousins' explanation. Your own teammate thinks you are totally full of s--t, man. I think that's a sign, when not even those closest to you can hear your conspiracy theories without open laughter.
In the chat at practice, Cousins also argued that he'd be looked at differently were the team winning. That's true. If the team were winning, we'd be ripping him even harder for taking himself out of games. As it is, his 19th ejection of the season (rough estimate) won't mean a whole lot in the final standings. If the Kings were on the fringe of the playoffs, he'd be getting pilloried nationally for getting himself an automatic ejection in a game he was dominating.
And that's still the thing that sticks in my craw: he totally let Mike Dunleavy win. Cousins relays the exchange on the play before to Jones and the reporters at practice. Cousins thinks it makes Dunleavy look guilty of inciting Cousins. IT DOES. It makes me think Dunleavy knew exactly what he was doing, and he did it perfectly, and IT WORKED. Because Cousins cannot control his temper. Dunleavy played better defense on Cousins than Larry Sanders ever could have, because Dunleavy got Cousins out of there completely.
"But he started it" is never going to win you favor in the NBA. You lay in the bed you make, largely, and Cousins needs to either realize that or just become Danny Fortson already.
UPDATE: Video from Mr. Jones.