The New Orleans Pelicans’ star big men have been working out both in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.
Cousins played in 17 games for the Pelicans after being acquired in a blockbuster trade with the Sacramento Kings in February. Davis and Cousins had to adjust to each other on the fly and the Pelicans went 7-10 in those games. Their stats in those games gave a glimpse at how potent the pair can be together: Cousins averaged 24.4 points and 12.4 rebounds while Davis averaged 28.3 points and 11.1 rebounds, according to ESPN Stats Information.
“We’ve just tried to get in as much work as possible this summer,” Davis told the team’s website. “We didn’t have that much time last season to work out with each other, because we didn’t have training camp or [many practices]. So we wanted to take advantage of this opportunity, where we had time in the summer in the same city and can get in some work in together, because we’ll be playing with each other a lot.
“It’s about trying to get used to each other. Of course we knew what each other can do from when we matched up against each other when he was in Sacramento, but it’s different now, learning where he likes to be and where I can get my shots from, or where he can get his shots. We didn’t want to waste training camp trying to figure that out. We’re going to both use this to be ready and try to improve the team.”
The Pelicans signed point guard Rajon Rondo this offseason and Cousins was instrumental in bringing his former Kings teammate to New Orleans. Cousins’ recruitment of Rondo impressed Davis.
“[Cousins] played with him in Sac, and he definitely knows him very well, as well as from Kentucky,” Davis told the team’s website. “He definitely was a key part in getting Rondo. We’re just happy we got him. It goes back to DeMarcus just trying to help the team in whatever way possible. Helping us to go get Rondo was one of those things.”
Rondo played with Cousins in Sacramento during the 2015-16 season, and the two formed a strong bond.
In their lone season together, Rondo averaged a league-leading 11.7 assists to along with 11.9 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game. He recorded 237 assists to Cousins — his most assists to one player in a single season, according to ESPN Stats Information.