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NBA Free Agency: Houston Rockets sign DeMarcus Cousins on unguaranteed one-year, prove-it deal

Demarcus Cousins

The Houston Rockets are apparently looking to retain James Harden and Westbrook, by the looks of it. Their moves in the free agency market suggest as much.

After signing Christian Wood to a multi-year contract, they added another promising big man in DeMarcus Cousins. When he was last fit and firing properly, Cousins was a wrecking ball on offense averaging 27 points for the Pelicans. While an Achilles injury may forever have hampered his mobility, he still has a lot of value.

Also Read: New Orleans Pelicans sign center Steven Adams to 2-year contract extension

What does DeMarcus Cousins bring to the table?

The Rockets have tried shopping Westbrook all around the league without much success. Both him and Harden have indicated they want trades away from the Rockets. The Rockets’ front office, however, holds all the cards here. They have the duo under contract for the next 3 seasons, and don’t need to hurry to find them new teams.

The Rockets will want their pound of flesh before making either of the superstar guards available for a trade partner. On the other hand, as long as they’re on the team, it will be the front office’s prime focus to keep a competitive roster around them.

This is where Cousins comes in. The Rockets were walloped by the Lakers’ small ball lineup with Anthony Davis at center in their last 4 games of the series. They don’t want the same mistake to be repeated, which is why they have signed 2 big men already.

Shipping Robert Covington for a pair of first round picks was a tough deal to make, but it gave them some insulation from possible Harden/Westbrook trades.

DeMarcus Cousins will be looking to maximize this opportunity and his earning potential by performing for the Rockets.


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