Los Angeles Clippers v Sacramento Kings

DeMarcus Cousins on Chris Paul: ‘I dislike CP a lot’

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DeMarcus Cousins hasn’t gotten along with Chris Paul. That’s been clear for a while now.

If you want an update, their feud hasn’t been resolved.

Cousins, speaking with Bill Simmons of Grantland, was talking about Blake Griffin when the Kings center turned the discussion to Paul.

  • Simmons: “I thought you guys had a little beef, right?”
  • Cousins: “Nah.”
  • Simmons: “Nothing?”
  • Cousins: “Just a little rivalry, but I don’t have a problem with Blake.”
  • Simmons: “Didn’t you guys almost get in a fight once?”
  • Cousins: “No.”
  • Simmons: “Altercation? Argument?”
  • Cousins: “No.”
  • Simmons: “Nothing?”
  • Cousins: “No.”
  • Simmons: “You sure? I feel like I was at a game where that might have happened.”
  • Cousins: “No.”
  • Simmons: “There was some talking?”
  • Cousins: “Probably me and CP, but not me and Blake. I don’t have a problem with Blake.”
  • Simmons: “Oh, you’re one of the guys who doesn’t like – there’s a lot of guys who CP kind of bugs.”
  • Cousins: “Yeah, I dislike CP a lot.”
  • Simmons: “CP does a lot of talking.”
  • Cousins: “I know.”
  • Simmons: What if you saw him off the court? You’d be OK with him, right?”
  • Cousins: “I don’t have a problem.”
  • Simmons: “The good news is you’re like 12 inches taller than him if you ever have – he’s like 5-10.”
  • Cousins: “I know. That’s usually how it goes. It’s the small ones.””
  • Simmons: “Could you play with somebody like that, who’s just like a Chihuahua, just barking at everybody for three hours?”
  • Cousins: “Yeah, because I’m the same way.”

I love that Cousins essentially admits that he dislikes Paul because they play for different teams. That’s really the root of the whole issue. Put them on the same team, and they’d be best buds. Now, though, there’s nothing to link them.

Later, the conversation turns to another polarizing player, Rajon Rondo.

  • Simmons: So you think Rondo is the best point guard in the league?
  • Cousins: Absolutely.
  • Simmons: How much of that has to do with the fact that you and Chris Paul don’t like each other that much.
  • Cousins: Nothing at all.

I don’t believe Cousins, and if he’s telling the truth, he’s wrong.

I’d definitely take Paul, Stephen Curry and Russell Westbrook over Rondo. With Derrick Rose – and Rondo himself – health determines the debate. Rondo is on the same tier as Tony Parker, and younger point guards like Damian Lillard, Kyrie Irving and John Wall could reach that level soon if they’re not there already.

But I do find Cousins’ fondness for Rondo particularly interesting in light of the latest rumors – free agents not wanting to play with Rondo and the Kings discussing a trade for Josh Smith.

Rondo – whom Sacramento previously tried to trade for – and Smith are close friends. Maybe the two of them could give Cousins the support he needs to actually challenge Paul and the Clippers.

Russell Westbrook: ‘Don’t say what’s up to that b— a—’ (video)

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Did Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant talk during the Warriors’ win over the Thunder last night? Westbrook said no, though video and first-hand accounts indicate otherwise.

Even more clearly: Westbrook – who walked near teammates Enes Kanter, Anthony Morrow and Jerami Grant – didn’t want someone talking to someone as they left the floor after the game. ESPN caught Westbrook saying, “Don’t say what’s up to that b— a—.”

You will never convince anyone Westbrook is referring to anyone but Durant.

Russell Westbrook commits epic travel (video)

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Between getting laid out by Zaza Pachulia and apparently talking with Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook committed a travel for the ages.

The Thunder guard took an inbound pass against the Warriors and just started walking up court without dribbling. The violation was so blatant, NBA officials even called the travel.

And it’s not as if they’re inclined to blow a whistle in that situation. Before Westbrook, Kemba Walker set a high bar last season, but he got away with this walk:

Are Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant on speaking terms after apparent conversation? Westbrook: ‘Nah’ (video)

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Russell Westbrook deleted Kevin Durant‘s goodbye text and, months later, told the whole world they still hadn’t talked.

That apparently changed during the Warriors’ win over the Thunder yesterday – though not if you ask Westbrook.

Westbrook dunked in the third quarter, and according to ESPN commentator Mark Jackson, Westbrook told Durant, “Don’t jump.” Anthony Slater of The Mercury News also wrote of the same quote.

ESPN’s telecast caught Durant clearly speaking to Westbrook shortly after. It appears Westbrook is talking back, but his back is to the camera.

After the game, Westbrook denied the exchange:

 

  • Reporter: “Are you and KD on speaking terms?”
  • Westbrook: “Nah.”
  • Reporter: “You guys had a little exchange in the third quarter.”
  • Westbrook: “What exchange?”
  • Reporter: “You and KD said something to each other.”
  • Westbrook: “Oh. You gotta maybe sit closer to the game. You maybe didn’t see clearly.”

This is so Westbrook – stubborn to the point of denying reality.

That approach worked for him when everyone rightly told him he was a significantly lesser player than Durant. Westbrook ignored that fact until it became false.

I suspect he wants to forget this exchange so he can maintain a cold animosity toward someone he prefers to resent.

Russell Westbrook on Zaza Pachulia: ‘I’m going to get his ass back’

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Russell Westbrook has spent a lot of time bagging on Kevin Durant since Durant left the Thunder for the Warriors.

In a move that can’t help but be seen as a response, Golden State center Zaza Pachulia laid out and stood over Westbrook last night.

Of course, the Oklahoma City guard didn’t see that as rightful comeuppance.

Westbrook:

I don’t know. He me kind of hard. But it’s alright. I’m going to get his ass back. Straight up.

I didn’t see that [Pachulia standing over him] until just now, but I don’t play that game. I’m going to get his ass back. Whenever that is, I don’t know when it’s going to be, but I don’t play that game.

Pachulia:

I can’t worry about those kind of comments. I’m part of the amazing team, amazing group. We have a great goal of winning a championship. So, I’m all in with my energy. One hundred percent, I’m all in. So we’re thinking about this team and staying healthy, moving forward, getting better, getting to the playoffs and we’re ending up playing for the championship.

That’s what I’m thinking about. I’m not thinking about those kind of comments.

That team is not there. So, they might be thinking about other stuff like getting me back. OK, you can get me back. But again, it’s my 14th year. We all know what my game is, to play hard and not dirty, but to play hard. If it was a hard foul, it was a hard foul. It wasn’t dirty at all. So, I’m not worried about this.

Pachulia continued, via Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post:

“Bring it on,” he said. “Bring it on.

“I’ll be there. I’ll be in OKC, too, so whenever he wants, my pleasure. My pleasure.”

And via Royce Young of ESPN:

Both Westbrook’s and Pachulia’s competitiveness and toughness are beyond reproach. These are not the type of players to back down.

What does Westbrook have in mind? I believe him when he says he doesn’t know. But I’m intrigued to find out.

As if the Warriors visit to Oklahoma City next month didn’t already have enough storylines.