Veteran free agent center DeMarcus Cousins is signing a deal with the Houston Rockets, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Monday evening. Cousins had reportedly been drawing interest from multiple teams in a shallow center market. Hassan Whiteside is still out there waiting to be signed, but we’ve seen Serge Ibaka, Tristan Thompson and a few lesser names already sign with teams. The deal is a non-guaranteed, one-year contract, per Shams.
Cousins had been with the Los Angeles Lakers last season but didn’t see the court. He hasn’t played an NBA game since 2018-19 when he was with the Golden State Warriors. The reason being Cousins tore his Achilles and needed plenty of time to recover. Usually it takes about a season or so to recover from this type of injury but it can be longer for players of Cousins’ size (6’10”).
Let’s take a look at how the Rockets look after the deal. For now, we can assume that James Harden and Russell Westbrook aren’t going anywhere. Both have been reported as unhappy and want out of Houston. The Rockets have said they want to hold onto both players and think they can mend the relationship. In an attempt to mend said relationship, the Rockets have added actual bigs. PF Christian Wood was signed to a three-year deal a few days ago and now Boogie enters the mix as a reclamation project of sorts.
So the Rockets — if Boogie is healthy — could enter the 2020-21 season with a starting five of Harden, Westbrook, Eric Gordon, Wood and Cousins. We’ll call it 2.5 All-Stars, a budding young forward and one of the better 3-point specialists in the NBA. Stephen Silas likely won’t play the same type of offense as Mike D’Antoni. That may not be a bad idea with the changes the Rockets have made to the roster. They’ve got some more size and still have two of the best guards in the League.