DeMarcus Cousins can be moody, temperamental and a little surly at times. He is also immensely talented and working his tail off to get ready to play for the USA Select Team and possibly the Men’s National Team.
Chris Bosh pulled out of Olympic consideration late last week due to the abdominal injury he suffered in the playoffs. Team USA received another blow today after Anthony Davis, the first pick in Thursday night’s NBA Draft, sustained a sprained left ankle in a workout with the Hornets on Saturday.
Injuries to Dwight Howard, Andrew Bynum and LaMarcus Aldridge have already left Team USA light on the frontline. With only Tyson Chandler and Kevin Love left among healthy bigs, Jerry Colangelo, director of USA Basketball, may take a look at Blake Griffin and Lamar Odom along with Cousins and Utah Jazz big man Derrick Favors, who are already members of the Select Team.
We spoke with Kings co-owner Gavin Maloof on the possibility of Cousins making the Olympic Team Saturday and he was glowing with excitement.
“It would be an honor for our organization,” Maloof said. “For DeMarcus, his game has really come along. He’s one of the top four or five centers in the league now. I think he’s got a good shot to make it. In fact, he’s not going there just to be on the Select Team, he wants to make the Olympic Team.”
In a cruel stroke of irony, Tyreke Evans was on the USA Select Team two summers ago until he sprained his left ankle in one of the opening practices. That initial injury turned into plantar fasciitis which cost Evans parts of the 2010-11 season and set back his development.
Kings fans have responded in force through social media, using the hash tag #BoogieforAmerica to promote their young center. It should be an exciting few days as Cousins puts his talents on full display in Las Vegas, where Team USA is preparing for the summer games. It’s time for Cousins to check the attitude at the door and fight for a chance to represent his country.