NBA Free Agency Round-up: 2nd July - DeMarcus Cousins Signs With The Warriors; Rajon Rondo to the Lakers and More
The head of steam picked up by franchises on Day 1 of free agency meant that Day 2 was slated to be an exciting one for NBA fans. And so it turned out to be, as a plethora of talented players found takers for their talents on a day when LeBron James may not have signed with the Lakers, but the league arguably felt an even greater impact than the day before that.
Many franchises which had lain dormant on the first day of free agency swung into action on the second. A couple of teams bade goodbye to prospects whom they'd drafted and developed. Some veterans hopped on from a small-market team to a big-market one which had more appreciation for their talents.
The following were the biggest moves of Day 2:
#1 The Warriors land DeMarcus Cousins
In a classic case of the rich getting richer, the Golden State Warriors used the mid-level exception of $5.3 million to sign DeMarcus Cousins. They now have an All-Star starting lineup, the likes of which the league has definitely never seen - even the Celtics in 1986 had Bill Walton coming off the bench at the fag end of an illustrious career.
There aren't enough words to state how dominant they could turn out to be on both sides of the court now. A team which got away with fielding Zaza Pachulia and JaVale McGee for long spans of time in Finals series and still has an 8-1 record now has the opportunity to start a 27-year-old Cousins, who will be looking to come back with a vengeance alongside 28-year-old Klay Thompson, 28-year-old Draymond Green, 30-year-old Kevin Durant and 30-year-old Stephen Curry.
In retrospect, it seems awfully funny that Kobe Bryant did not get to play with Chris Paul because it would be 'unfair for the league' from 2011 onwards, and yet we are here this day when 5 All-Stars in their prime could steamroller all the opposition on the way to a 3rd NBA title.
The only question now is about whether Cousins will stick around for a smaller contract once he stages his comeback. He is well worth a max contract if he comes back even at 90% of his level, and the Warriors will then not be able to retain him.