So far, wrong on DeMarcus Cousins

Last summer I made a big deal about chastising the teams who passed on DeMarcus Cousins.  Maybe I was wrong.  The only team who — so far — looks bad for passing on Cousins is the New Jersey Nets, and that’s only because Derrick Favors looks like an historic bust.

For the preseason, Cousins posted a Marginal Win Score per 48 of (-1.98).  That translates to a personal winning percentage of .166%.  That’s not very good.

The four players drafted ahead of him posted the following MWS48s and corresponding winning percentages:

1. John Wall…(-0.68)…(.387%)
2. Evan Turner…(+0.43)…(.576%)
3. Derrick Favors…(-3.52)…(-.095%)
4. Wesley Johnson…(-1.37)…(.270%)
5. DeMarcus Cousins…(-1.98)…(.166%)

Analysis on Cousins: Poor use of Possessions

Why has Cousins not lived up to my hype so far?  Let’s compare his numbers per 48 minutes to the numbers I projected for him this summer:

Stats per 48:  FG-FGA —  FT-FTA — Rebs —  Ass — Stls — Blks — TOs — PFs — Pts
Prediction:  8.7-17.1 — 5.7-10.3 — 16.9 — 1.7 — 1.5 — 2.2 — 3.7 — 7.6 — 23.1
PreSeason:  9.2-22.7 — 7.1-8.9 — 14.7 –1.3 — 1.3 — 1.3 — 5.5 — 7.9 — 26.4

As you can see, the only categories I got right so far are the most predictable ones: personal fouls, assists, and steals.  Otherwise, Cousins has not rebounded as I expected, and while he’s scored more points than I thought he would, he’s had to use a TON more possessions in order to accomplish that feat.  When you combine all that with his high level of turnovers per “at risk” possessions used (16.4%… NBA average: 12.7%), it all adds up to a much lower Win Score per 48 than my numbers imagined (13.4 vs. 7.1).

My guess is that Cousins suffers from the same disease as most of this seasons rookies not named Blake Griffin:  settling for jumpers.  I do not know that for sure because I do not have a shooting breakdown to rely upon.  But a quick look at his FTA/FGA (39%) compared to his collegiate FTA/FGA (73%) suggests he is not taking the basketball to the hoop.

But, I think he can get better.  In fact, the only player amongst the top 5 whom I might be inclined to give up on is Favors.  He has looked terrible.

Clearly the most valuable rookie this season will be Los Angeles Clippers PF Blake Griffin.  He has demonstrated superstar skills and production levels already.  That is rare.  Now, whether he will win the ROY is a different question.  Especially when guys like ESPN’s Ric Bucher vote on the award (commenting on Kobe Bryant’s 6-for-24 performance in Game Seven of the NBA Finals, Bucher said something stupid like this “The amazing thing is, he still got the job done.  He still finished the game with 23 points and put his team in position to win”.  MY COMMENT: If you can’t see the absolute stupidity of that statement, stop reading this blog.  The idea that Bucher is regarded as an “expert” boggles the mind.)

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6 Responses to “So far, wrong on DeMarcus Cousins”

  1. arturogalletti Says:

    Ty,
    Nice post. Any chance you can chart jeff adrien, jeremy evans & Manny Harris (the rookies who had the highest WP48 in the preaseason after Blake).

  2. arturogalletti Says:

    Ty,
    Awesome. Thanks.

  3. dan fitz Says:

    Glad its not just me who thinks Bucher is an idjut

  4. tywill33 Says:

    Dan,

    His other astoundingly stupid comment was this “Oscar Robertson was never as highly regarded in his time as LeBron James is today”. My brain would have blown up had Chris Broussard not taken immediate and vigorous issue with that idiotic, ignorant comment.

    I hate the sport MMA. I think its sanctioned barfighting. But I was watching “MMA Live” the other night and I learned more about that sport from their roundtable analysts than I have ever learned about basketball from anyone employed as a basketball analyst by ESPN. That’s just sad.

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