Should DeMarcus Cousins play in Friday's game against the Knicks?

Leading Off: Smart call on Cousins – now trade him

Published: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 1C
Last Modified: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012 - 10:53 pm

Just wondering if Keith Smart took a page from Dean Wormer's book at Faber College and placed DeMarcus Cousins on double- secret probation.

Whatever that is.

Because the time has come for someone to put his foot down on this misbehaving center, and that foot appears to belong to the Kings' coach.

By keeping Cousins home for Wednesday night's game in Portland, Smart sent a message to the center and the rest of the team that he will not be disrespected by anyone within the organization.

And that includes management, which shamefully decided a one-game suspension for Cousins was punishment enough for cussing out the coach in front of the team. Really? What does he have to do to warrant a two-game suspension? Slap Smart?

Kudos to Smart for not playing Cousins in his first game back with the team, but top it with Cool Whip and some chocolate sprinkles for keeping him home.

In doing so, Smart saved himself – and the rest of the team – from likely having to see Cousins sulk at the end of the bench, and who knows what else? Bad-mouthing the coach to teammates under his breath? Bad body language during timeouts?

So you think Cousins learned anything by staying home Wednesday night? Probably not.

Three suspensions in two months. At least one suspension in each of his three seasons.

He calls out TV commentators, yells at teammates and blames referees. Now he disrespects his coach – his biggest supporter – in front of the team.

If Cousins hasn't learned how to conduct himself as a professional by now, he never will.

Trade him.

What to watch

Military Bowl, San Jose State vs. Bowling Green, noon, ESPN: The Spartans play in their first bowl since 2006.

Today's poll

Should DeMarcus Cousins play in Friday's game against the Knicks?

• Yes, they need him

• No, keep him on bench

Vote above or leave your comments in the comment field; or, go to www.sacbee.com/sports

Wednesday's results

Would you like to see Jimmer Fredette start for the Kings?

• Yes, give him a shot: 95%

• No, stick with Aaron Brooks: 5%

Total votes: 1,153

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