Earlier this week, DeMarcus Cousins was ejected for the first time this season. Today, he’s learned that’s he’s been suspended for the first time this year.
The NBA announced that the Kings starting center has been suspended one game without pay and fined $20,000 for incidents occurring in Tuesday’s game against the Houston Rockets. NBA President of Basketball Operations Rod Thorn announced the suspension and fine today. Cousins will serve his suspension tomorrow when the Kings take on the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center.
Cousins’ suspension comes for punching Rockets guard Patrick Beverley in the stomach in the first quarter of the Kings’ 26-point loss to the Rockets on Feb. 25. The incident occurs at the 9:44 mark of the period. Video of the incident can be seen in the link here.
His fine is a result of “verbally abusing a game official and failing to leave the court in a timely manner”, according to the NBA. The incident happened at the 8:21 mark in the third quarter of Tuesday’s game. Following practice yesterday, Cousins talked about his frustration with officiating in Tuesday’s game.
“On the incident, I thought it was a bad call,” Cousins said Wednesday, referring to when he received his fourth personal foul while defending Dwight Howard. “Wasn’t really frustrated about the call. It was a bad call; we knew that. I was more frustrated about the technical I received because I really don’t know what I did to receive it. Just that on top of the bad foul, lost my cool, resulted in the second technical.”
Cousins is one technical foul away from receiving another suspension from the NBA. The league hands out an automatic suspension for players who reach a technical foul threshold of 16.
“He’s aware,” Kings head coach Michael Malone said Wednesday when asked if Cousins knows he needs to do a better job of keeping his emotions in check. “He’s too important to this team. When you’re the franchise player, you can’t put yourself in a position to get thrown out of a game. And as bad as you feel…not getting the calls, you have to somehow find a way to move past that and harness that emotion. That’s his challenge right now. He’s talented, but he’s an emotional player, which is fine, but how do you handle that emotion?”