Basketball / NBA

Pelicans agree to trade with Kings for Cousins

AP

DeMarcus Cousins is on his way out of Sacramento — and right into an All-Star frontcourt pairing with Anthony Davis.

The New Orleans Pelicans agreed to acquire Cousins from the Kings on Sunday, the same night the center was playing in the All-Star Game in their arena.

The Kings dealt one of the most talented but temperamental big men in the game along with Omri Casspi to New Orleans in exchange for Tyreke Evans, 2016 first-round draft pick Buddy Hield, Langston Galloway and first- and second-round draft picks this summer, a person familiar with the situation said.

The person spoke to AP on condition of anonymity because the trade is not official and has not been announced by either team.

The deal pairs the 210-cm Cousins, a frontcourt All-Star from nearby Mobile, Alabama, with the 210-cm Davis, who on Sunday night was the All-Star Game MVP.

The move also sends a message that the Pelicans are more concerned with making a 25-game push for the playoffs this spring than where they’ll be drafting next offseason.

The deal was still in the works when Cousins spoke with reporters after the All-Star Game, when he played just two minutes as trade rumors swirled.

He said he was happy with the Kings, but would also be happy playing closer to home and alongside Davis.

“If I’m blessed enough to have a job here, absolutely,” Cousins said. “If that’s what happens.”

New Orleans (23-34) went into the All-Star break 2½ games behind Denver for the eighth and final playoff seeding in the Western Conference.

Cousins, a former collegiate star at Kentucky like Davis, is averaging 27.8 points and 10.6 rebounds this season.

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