John Wall is headed to the Houston Rockets in a stunning trade that netted the Wizards former MVP Russell Westbrook in exchange for Wall and a protected 2023 first-round pick.
Though there are question marks surrounding how Wall will fit in the Rockets’ offense alongside James Harden, there is one player in Houston who he will have no problem gelling with: DeMarcus Cousins.
Cousins and Wall played together at Kentucky during the 2009-10 season and have known each other since they were teenagers. Throughout their NBA careers, the pair of friends has publicly stated their desire to play alongside one another, but their situations never aligned enough for them to do so.
Now, with Wall having forced his way out of Washington and Cousins signed to a prove-it minimum contract, they finally have a chance to share the court.
“Man, it’s an incredible feeling,” Cousins said on a Zoom call with reporters Thursday. “This is something me and [Wall] have planned and dreamed about for a long time so I’m pretty sure he’s just as grateful for this moment as I am, super excited. There’s obviously a chemistry between me and him from our college days. I mean, not only were we teammates in college, we’ve known each other since we were 14.
“That’s a guy I consider one of my better friends in the NBA. He was actually one of the groomsmen in my wedding. That’s a brother for life, so I’m extremely excited to be on the floor with him.”
When the news first broke that Wall was headed to Houston, Cousins posted a tweet to give a glimpse at how he was feeling about the prospect of playing with his former Wildcats teammate.
It’s unclear what kind of production Wall and Cousins are capable of after both suffered multiple significant injuries over the past few seasons. But if there’s one thing the Rockets already have going for them, it’s some pre-existing chemistry.