Demarcus Cousins, the embattled Sacramento Kings center, has been suspended one game for hitting Atlanta’s Al Horford in the head with a forearm.
The NBA announced the suspension a day after ‘Boogie’ Cousins and Horford tangled late in the first quarter of Wednesday’s game.
“It was basically a reaction. I was trying to get him off me because when I shot the shot I (got hit) in this area,” Cousins, 25, told reporters Wednesday, while pointing to his neck and collarbone. “I was just trying to get him off,” added Cousins.
Cousins is not a stranger to suspensions and fines. He sat out of last season’s finale after picking up an unprecedented 16th technical foul. Cousins actually needed the league to rescind a technical in each of the previous two seasons just to avoid an automatic suspension.
Cousins, widely regarded as the bad boy of the NBA, was also suspended in February and fined $20,000 for punching Houston Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley in the stomach besides verbally abusing an official.
Cousins sat out of Thursday night’s 116-109 loss to Miami Heat. Clearly, the Kings aren’t a threat to oppositions without Cousins in the starting unit. Sacramento is now 6-33 over the last three seasons when Cousins sits out, including 0-5 this season.
“He’s one of the best bigs in the NBA, so I’d have liked to take that challenge on and really compete against him,” said Heat center Hassan Whiteside.
Erik Spoelstra, the Heat coach, said: “Obviously, they were missing a major piece of what they do.”