Monday, September 2nd, 2013 at 11:15 am  |  14 responses

Kings Head Coach Wants to Turn DeMarcus Cousins into a Passer

Longtime assistant coach Michael Malone is a very hands-on guy. As the new head coach in Sacramento, Malone has the challenge of getting young Kings center DeMarcus Cousins to buy into his basketball philosophy — one that places a premium on defense and ball movement. Malone is working on getting Cousins to become a better passer. Per the SacBee: “The phrase ‘change the culture’ has become such a cliché. What does it even mean? MM: ‘It is a cliché. What I mean is that when you want to change culture, you change people. When the players come back in September, they’re going to get a sense that things are different when they’re around our staff. They can see how hard we work, how committed we are. I’m running sprints last week with DeMarcus Cousins and Travis Outlaw, and they said, ‘Coach, we’ve never had a guy run sprints with us.’ You had DeMarcus running sprints? Where was this? Right across the street, on the track at Inderkum High School. This summer, we had Isaiah Thomas, Jason Thompson, Jimmer Fredette, Marcus Thornton working out during the summer league, and we’re all sweating, working. When I went down to Santa Barbara to meet with Patrick Patterson, he said, ‘Coach, I’ve been hearing things.’ This is no knock on Keith Smart or his staff. Keith is a great coach, and the circumstances were far from ideal. But I know for my situation, and my staff, we are going to be a work staff, an energetic staff. Aside from my father, I’ve hired a very young staff. I don’t want any moping around. The other challenge for me, I want our players to embody unity, trust, unselfishness.’ [...] So, finally, there is the center position. It’s no secret the organization regards DeMarcus Cousins as a franchise-level talent. How good is he? How much more can he improve? MM: ‘I’ve talked about DeMarcus a lot, but he’s so talented. He’s a big who can play away from the basket. But I’m going to ask him to play inside as well this year, be a guy we can run our offense through at times, because he can be such a good passer. The challenge for him is to cut down on those three turnovers a game. The luxury we had last year at Golden State, we had two bigs (David Lee and Andrew Bogut) who were not only good passers but willing passers. My hope is we get to that at some point.’”

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  • spit hot fiyah

    might be a good idea since none of their guards know how to do it

  • CzechMate

    Passing is the number 1 underrated skill in basketball, if you actually cut instead of standing around a well placed bounce pass gets you a easy two. how do you think the elder statesmen(spurs) took the heat to 7, they pass the crap out of that rubber. I remember in high school we went to this private school, the team was a bunch of unathletic kids, we thought we were going to crush them and they had like 30 team assists and beat us by 20 lol. so I like what Malone is doing here, cheers mate

  • Da Real

    Good luck with that coach. He’ll be lucky to get through the season without getting smacked by DeMarcus. Baby steps coach, baby steps, lol

  • Mitya Ya

    He’s already one of the better passing big men, too.

  • Caboose

    Talented? Yes. Willing? Not exactly.

  • Caboose

    They officially have Greivis now, which should REALLY help with that.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    He’s like a child tho. They reward him or show him that it is rewarding, he’ll buy in. That’s what Vlade Divac taught Chris Webber, or so I’ve been led to believe.

  • Caboose

    That’s been the problem with this team for years: literally zero veteran leadership and Kevin Martin does not count.

  • Saleem Rainman

    underrated that man is

  • http://triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    I would have been happy if you could have done that with Tyreke…

  • spit hot fiyah

    honestly forgot about him. i just remembered, thomas, jimmer,salmons, thornton and mcklemore.

  • Clos1881

    I’ve never thought of Demarcus cousins as selfish or unwilling to pass that distinction would go to Marcus thorton.

  • LakeShow

    King’s should be allot better with him on board.

  • JL

    Cousins is a decent passer. That won’t be hard for him. What he needs to stop doing is jacking up long 2′s. Worst shot in basketball, and even worse when he takes them cuz he sucks at it.