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DeMarcus Cousins and George Karl don’t get along.
Kings vice president of basketball operations Vlade Divac on The Jim Rome Show:
“I will be honest with you, I think it’s not pretty right now,” Divac said of the two. “I’m focused on bringing a better team this year, and I think I did a pretty good job in this free agency, and now I will be focused on the two of them. I think they should think about how they can do the best for this team, and I hope everything goes well.”
“A lot of rumors around the country talking about ‘he’s not going to play for coach’, ‘coach wants to trade him'; it’s not going to happen,” said Divac. “If somebody is going to make a decision, I’m going to make the decision. So I want to keep them both here for now. DeMarcus is definitely our guy that we want to build a team around.”
This is obviously no shocker, but it is a little surprising to see Divac address it so directly publicly.
Count this as yet another example of Divac denying he’ll trade Cousins, which makes sense. Cousins is an elite player, the best thing the Kings have going. He should take priority.
But what about Karl? He’s a good coach, but if he can’t get along with Cousins well enough, he can’t effectively coach Sacramento.
The first priority is and should be trying to get Cousins and Karl on the same page. I don’t think their relationship is necessarily doomed, and neither does Divac.
If that doesn’t work, though, it’s clear who will be the one to go.