Pre-season interview #3: DeMarcus Cousins.

I have a friend who played a huge role in my taking on this role of beat blogger. After first interviewing Hassan Whiteside and then Jason Thompson, this friend (and loyal reader) asked who was next. Out of gratitude for his encouraging me to try something that has taken me down a magical rabbit hole, I told him that the next one was his choice. I never thought he would ask for DeMarcus Cousins. You see, I am still learning the ropes with this interviewing gig and well, honestly, Cousins is way above my pay grade. The 6-11, 290-pound twenty-year-old is a riddle wrapped up in an enigma. He is post graduate work and I am still trying to get out of freshman interviews 101. Nonetheless, being a man of my word, here is The Purple Panjandrum with DeMarcus Cousins.

TPP: This being your first training camp, how do you feel like you are progressing?

DMC: I’ve been doing a lot of extra, I mean, my legs have been gone, just dead. I’m trying to get in tip top shape for the season, keep progressing with my body and it’s been tough.

TPP: Do you feel like your personality is coming out yet?

DMC: Yeah, it was easy to get along with this group of guys. They’re great people, easy to talk to, and they all really have the same mind set that we are a young team and we just want to get better each day.

TPP: Who’s been your big brother on the team so far? Who’s been that one guy to put an arm around you?

DMC: I guess you could say all of the guys. All the veterans really. They’re a good group of guys and they really look out for you and what’s best for you and they want what’s best for you.

TPP: Hassan Whiteside loves to tweet about kicking your ass at Madden. What do you think about that?

DMC: To be honest, I think Hassan has a cheat code. I really don’t know what that’s all about. When we first started out, I was killing him every day and now I can barely score a touchdown. I really think he’s got a code.

TPP: I saw a blog site called SacTownRoyalty where a blogger went through and simulated an entire season with you. You ended up with 14.4 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.9 blocks a game. I know it’s a video game but are those realistic numbers for your rookie year?

DMC: I don’t know, I guess we’ll have to see this season. I really don’t know. I hope I can do something like that but I haven’t played my first game yet, so I don’t know.

TPP: What do you think of the whirl-wind going through the draft process, having a persona developed of you by others; and then DeMarcus Cousins- the high school kid and the college kid is taken away and now you are something different that other people have created and it’s not really you?

DMC: That’s how it is, you know. They make their opinion. They spread their opinion and then their opinion becomes fact in other peoples’ eyes.

TPP: Okay, some quick hitters. Do you think you can lead the league in rebounding?

DMC: Eventually, I believe I can.

TPP: Are you going to be a 20-10 guy?

DMC: Hopefully.

TPP: Where do you see your career in 2 years?

DMC: Hopefully to be one of the best up and coming big men in the league. When they speak about top big men, I am mentioned and hopefully I’m an all-star.

TPP: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

DMC: The best big man in the league. An all-star.

TPP: What about in 12 years?

DMC: The best big man to play the game.

TPP: Lastly, are you going to be a hall of famer?

DMC: That’s the plan.

After 6 days of training camp, my opinion of DeMarcus Cousins has continued to evolve. When DMC is surrounded by reporters, with cameras and digital recorders placed not so delicately under his chin, he looks like he is boxing out for a rebound. When you get him away from the crowds and give him the opportunity to relax, he is bright and engaging.

Maybe I didn’t ask all the hard hitting questions, but I got DeMarcus Cousins to answer this question, “Are you going to be a hall of famer?” with “That’s the plan.” For this rookie, that is a moment to remember.

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About: James Ham

James Ham provides coverage through news analysis and in-depth interviews with Kings players and staff. James is also one of the producers behind the award-winning, independent documentary "Small Market, Big Heart". James graduated UC Davis with a degree in history and is happily married with two children.