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DeMarcus Cousins doesn’t think people give him a fair chance

Jan 8, 2013, 6:03 PM EDT

John Salmons, DeMarcus Cousins AP

DeMarcus Cousins isn’t totally wrong here — we tend not to give the benefit of the doubt to people we have seen act a certain way before.

That’s pretty much how Cousins sees his reputation and the response to him — people don’t give him a fair chance.

He said as much to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated in a fantastic interview. Seriously, go read the whole thing.

Cousins starts off by admitting he lets little things get to him too much but then says people don’t give him a chance.

“Sometimes I let some of the small things take over,” Cousins told “It can be a simple thing, like a call going the wrong way, and it takes me all off. I’ve got a real problem when I know something is wrong or I feel something is wrong, I’m going to speak about it. I get it from my mother. It’s a problem I have. I don’t want to say I want to change it because it helped me get where I am. But at the same time, I have to learn to be quiet….

“I’m not going to sit here and say I’m innocent, because I’ve done things,” Cousins said. “But to get the reputation that I’ve got, I don’t think I’ve done enough. I don’t have a criminal record. Some of the guys with the cleanest image in the league have a record. I don’t think I was given a fair chance. I don’t know what I did in college that was so bad to get that reputation. OK, there is footage of me and Coach Cal going at each other. That happens in sports. Coming into the league, everyone said I was going to be fat, I was the next Oliver Miller. I had all these red flags. I just feel I was never given a fair chance coming in.”

Cousins goes on to say that is still true with the Sacramento Kings, who treat him like he has never done anything right when he makes a mistake. They don’t give him the benefit of the doubt.

Because they have learned from the past.

The thing is, reputations can change. People mature. Reasonable people give others a second chance if they show they are changing.

Cousins needs to let things roll off his back — if a broadcaster criticizes you during a game, don’t go find him afterward to complain. Let it go. You prove him wrong by playing hard, playing smart and making him look foolish for what he said.

Cousins can do that — his immense talent is not in question. And he has been a model citizen by all reports since the last Kings suspension (that lasted all of one game). It sounds like a cheesy self-help book thought, but it’s true — if Cousins becomes the player he wants on and off the court, he will get that fair chance from people. But he’s going to have to earn that chance now.

  1. eventhorizon04 - Jan 8, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    Cousins should know all he has to do from now on is just keep his cool and play the game.

    Ray Lewis is the perfect example – if you just play your game and do it well, people will forgive you for past transgressions so long as you don’t make further mistakes.

  2. tsutor88 - Jan 8, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    This thick-headed kid has clearly brought this rep upon himself, and it’s going to take a substantial amount of time for his image to gradually change for the better. When people grow accustomed to look for the negative in a person, that’s what they’re going to find.

    He is just a kid after all, only a couple years removed from living under his momma’s roof…so don’t label this kid just yet. He’s got a lot of growing up ahead of him…

    • saint1997 - Jan 8, 2013 at 10:59 PM

      I agree and I think he is showing more maturity. That interview was an example of somebody who really has grown up and is starting to see where he has gone wrong and he has changed my perception of him a little bit. People often forget that these pro ball players come from rough rough ghetto neighbourhoods where they had to have that attitude (see J. Wall, Z. Randolph etc.) and it’s a bit of a lifestyle shock

  3. misterchainbluelightning - Jan 8, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    Everyone sees him making the same mistakes and learning nothing, and he still thinks it’s unfair. It’s not unfair, it’s human nature to eventually stop giving fair chances when nothing has changed. The fact that he still fails to understand this is just another reason why you have to doubt he ever will. Most athletes like this need to be traded before they begin to get it, but I doubt that would help Cousins. He needs a life humbling/altering, Ghosts of Past Present and Future to shake him from his selfish/inward way of thinking.

  4. kvvvv2391 - Jan 8, 2013 at 7:03 PM

    Cousins has become the Boy Who Cried Wolf. You get inundated with story after story showcasing his petulance and immaturity and eventually you become numb to it. So protest all you want JAMARCUS because people have stopped listening or caring.

    P.S. That’s right. I called him Jamarcus. At this rate that is where he is heading…

    • dko83 - Jan 8, 2013 at 8:14 PM

      lol, fail comparison.

  5. jckid21 - Jan 8, 2013 at 9:16 PM

    DeMarcus Cousins doesn’t think people give him a fair chance……..I got 15,800,133 reasons why he is getting a better chance than the rest of us.

  6. savvybynature - Jan 8, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    “And he has been a model citizen by all reports since the last Kings suspension”

    A whole two weeks without incident! He’s clearly turned a corner.

    Seriously though, he’s had more chances and benefit of the doubt than 99% of people who dream of becoming a professional athlete due to his immense talent. The fact that he doesn’t realize that, and continues to play the whiny, victim card, tells me he doesn’t get it.

    Not saying he is a bad guy, but he seems to have an attitude and lack of big picture perspective that just isn’t conducive to building a winning culture. Not everyone is meant to be a leader, but if the Kings keep him they better find some that they can team up with him because he clearly isn’t one.

  7. 6stn - Jan 8, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    Maybe he ought to try working for a living.

  8. mazblast - Jan 8, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    Listen to your coaches, listen to your teammates, listen to your mama, tune everyone else out, shut up, play.

    Now, is that so darned hard? Do it. And no, don’t expect a cookie every day you don’t overreact to something.

  9. moseskkim - Jan 8, 2013 at 11:13 PM

    Oliver miller lolol that cat was fat. His Chest was so big looked like he had life vest on. Wish cousins the best. Hope he has a turnaround like Zach Randolph except if he turns it around with his talent, he might become the best big man in the world.

  10. louhudson23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 3:25 AM

    There is nothing in this interview/piece that indicates this man has gained any insight whatsoever into how and why he has encountered the difficulties that he has. Utterly clueless.

  11. metalhead65 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:59 AM

    if this is suppose to make me feel sorry for him it did not work. all it shows is still does not get it. all I got from this was that it is everybody’s fault but his. everybody makes mistakes we get that but when you keep doing the same things then it’s you not them! you are an adult that has a job and while it is to play a game you get paid a ton of money to do it. like most people you may hate your boss and the stupid rules that come with the job but suck it up and do what you are suppose to and people will not be able to say bad things about you and you will be able to make even more money! it is not that hard to figure out so shut up and do what you are getting paid a fortune to do. and while it is great you have not been in trouble with the law that still does not make you less of an asshole when act like it all the time!

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