DeMarcus Cousins (cont.)
Should Cousins become a mainstay on the Western Conference All-Star team, he has the potential to be an All-Interview regular as well.
Sometimes surly, other times comedic or insightful, and always unfiltered, Cousins is a reporter's dream when it comes to -- as the kids say -- keeping it real. In a 30-minute chat, he didn't hold back on a number of touchy topics.
Cousins revealed for the first time that his former girlfriend from his hometown of Mobile, Ala., gave birth to his son, Amir, five months ago. It was, to be clear, one of the few times in the interview that he offered a hearty smile, speaking of how fatherhood had changed his perspective:
"It's fun. I'm enjoying it. You've got to grow up fast. It's an added responsibility. Now you're not just a role model for the fans, you're a role model for someone who is actually looking up to you. It changes your mindset."
On his distant memories of Paul Westphal, the former Kings coach who consistently battled with Cousins before he was fired seven games into last season:
"Every chance [people] get, they bring it [the Westphal incident] back up, never accepting the fact that maybe it was Westphal and it wasn't DeMarcus. But hell, we're going to stick with DeMarcus, to say it was DeMarcus. I haven't had an incident since, so you tell me.
"We've moved on, and we've gotten better from it. But I don't feel like I was treated right [by the organization] in that whole situation."
On his summer workout routine that has drawn so much praise from his Kings bosses:
"I basically doubled up my workouts. Even when [agent and adviser John Greig] wasn't in town, I still made sure I worked out. I was in the gym, running every night, watching the way I eat, watching my calorie count. Every little small thing.
"We haven't really worried about the [exact] weight, but I don't want to overdo it. I'm watching what I eat, trying not to eat too many heavy meals. I wasn't [doing that before]. Well, I was, but I wasn't as disciplined."
Last offseason and during the season under Westphal, Cousins said, "I put in the work but there was nothing positive coming out of it. No matter how much I did, it was never good enough. I wanted to be good. I wanted to be great. I wanted to be in the best shape. But at the same time, if I don't have the support system that's there and that's also trying to help me get there, then what can I do? What I'm saying is that was the Westphal era. Now we all have a goal, we know where we want to be. Me and coach [Keith Smart] are on the same page, so it's easier to get it done."
On the team and, specifically, the dynamic between him and fourth-year guard Tyreke Evans:
"At the end of the day, everybody in that locker room knows this team is myself and Tyreke's. I don't give a [expletive] about no articles [asking whose team it is]. This team goes as far as we carry it."
On the Lakers' new Super Team:
"That's whatever. I don't care. Dwight, Andrew, same thing. That's something they have to work out. I couldn't care less about the Lakers."
On playing in the frontcourt with rookie power forward Thomas Robinson, the Kansas product who fell to fifth in the draft after being projected as high as No. 2:
"His motor is crazy. That alone will help him. I really see him being like [Utah's] Paul Millsap. He's going to help us out a lot as well. He's not really the political type [personality-wise]. He's going to get straight to the chase. He's got a lot to prove. He came in the league the same way I did -- thinking like, 'Why is no one else believing in me? Why did I drop down so much?' He's definitely got a killer-instinct mindset, which I like, and he's trying to prove people wrong."
Boomer: Which NHL teams improved at the trade deadline?
Boomer: Could Phil Jackson really fix the Knicks?