IFWT_Shaq x Cousins

Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins has developed a reputation for his attitude and aggression.  Despite the amazing stats he puts up, his negative reputation still precedes him.  Shaquille O’Neal, one of the best big men in NBA history, stood up and defended Cousins demeanor, saying it’s necessary.

Shay Marie

via Dime Magazine:

“I tell him, ‘be yourself and dominate.’ First of all, if you don’t put numbers up, nobody’s going to look at you. Now that people are looking at you, you have to make them respect you. Sometimes when you do crazy stuff, nobody’s going to like it. But you can’t tame that passion. I want my big man to be mean. I don’t want my big man smiling all the time, so I don’t mind. All the greatest players were angry, and they talked all the time. Charles Barkley, myself, so many others. But we also put up numbers, we were positive and did the right things in the community.

“Cousins will get technicals, he’s going to argue with the referees. That’s called passion and you never want to take a guy’s passion away. And not every guy has passion. I know, because I can give you five big guys right now who don’t have passion. I won’t tell you, but you know who they are.”

You can bet that one of those “five big guys” is Dwight Howard.  It’s no secret that Shaq isn’t fond of Dwight and the “I don’t want my big man smiling all the time” dig was certainly geared towards him.  Dwight is known for being a jokester and smiling often.  I agree with Shaq that passion and a little anger is necessary but Cousins just needs a tad bit more self control.  Last season he had a league-leading 16 technicals, a suspension for having more than 15, and $70,000 in fines.