DeMarcus Cousins, the four-time NBA All-Star and former All-NBA center, is reportedly set to resume his basketball career in Puerto Rico. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Cousins has agreed to a deal with the Guaynabo Mets of the Baloncesto Superior Nacional (BSN), the top professional league in Puerto Rico.
Cousins, 31, has not played since February, when he was waived by the Houston Rockets after 25 games. He averaged 9.6 points and 7.6 rebounds in 20.2 minutes per game for the Rockets, but struggled with his efficiency and defense. He shot 37.6 percent from the field and 33.6 percent from three-point range, while posting a minus-3.2 net rating.
Cousins has been plagued by injuries in recent years, suffering a torn Achilles tendon in 2018, a torn quadriceps muscle in 2019 and a torn ACL in 2019. He missed the entire 2019-20 season and signed with the Los Angeles Lakers, but was waived before playing a game for them. He then joined the Rockets as a free agent in November 2020.
Cousins is hoping to use his stint in Puerto Rico as a springboard to return to the NBA, where he was once considered one of the best big men in the game. He made four consecutive All-Star appearances from 2015 to 2018, and averaged 25.2 points and 12.9 rebounds in his best season with the Sacramento Kings in 2016-17. He also played for the New Orleans Pelicans and the Golden State Warriors, reaching the NBA Finals with the latter in 2019.
The Guaynabo Mets are one of the most successful teams in Puerto Rican basketball history, having won 14 BSN championships. They are currently in fourth place in the league standings with a 10-7 record.
Their roster includes former NBA players Renaldo Balkman and Isaiah Whitehead, as well as Puerto Rican national team members J.J. Barea and Jorge Bryan Diaz.
Cousins is expected to join the team soon and make his debut in the coming days. He will face a different style of play and level of competition than he is used to in the NBA, but he will also have an opportunity to showcase his skills and health to potential suitors. If he can prove that he still has something left in the tank, he may earn another chance to play in the NBA next season.
Final Thoughts: DeMarcus Cousins Looks to Reignite His NBA Career with Guaynabo Mets
DeMarcus Cousins’ decision to join the Guaynabo Mets of the Baloncesto Superior Nacional in Puerto Rico is a smart move as he seeks to reestablish himself in the NBA.
After struggling with injuries and inconsistent play in recent years, Cousins needs to prove that he can still contribute at a high level and that his body can hold up to the rigors of professional basketball.
Playing for the Guaynabo Mets will provide Cousins with an opportunity to play meaningful games and demonstrate his value to potential NBA suitors. The Puerto Rican league is known for its physical and aggressive style of play, which should suit Cousins’ bruising style.
Moreover, playing alongside former NBA players like Renaldo Balkman and Isaiah Whitehead, as well as Puerto Rican national team members, will help Cousins stay sharp and motivated.
Cousins’ statistics with the Houston Rockets last season were underwhelming, but it’s worth noting that he played limited minutes and was not fully healthy.
He showed flashes of his old self, however, with some impressive performances, including a 28-point, 17-rebound game against the Dallas Mavericks. If he can stay healthy and find his groove, he could be a valuable addition to an NBA team in need of frontcourt depth.
Of course, there are risks to Cousins’ decision to play in Puerto Rico. He will be far from the NBA spotlight and may not get as much exposure as he would if he were playing in a domestic league. Additionally, there is always the possibility of further injuries or setbacks, which could derail his comeback attempt.
Overall, though, this is a low-risk, high-reward move for Cousins. If he can play well in Puerto Rico and demonstrate that he can still compete at a high level, he may find himself back in the NBA sooner rather than later. The Guaynabo Mets are getting a proven star, and Cousins is getting a chance to write a new chapter in his career.