DeMarcus Cousins: James Harden showed Rockets ‘disrespect’ all season


Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) talks with forward Christian Wood (35) during a timeout in the second quarter of a preseason NBA basketball game against the San Antonio Spurs, Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020, at Toyota Center, in Houston. (Mark Mulligan/Houston Chronicle via AP)

James Harden has played his final game as a member of the Houston Rockets after reportedly being traded to the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday.

One Rockets player who won’t miss Harden is centre DeMarcus Cousins, who, prior to the trade reports, spoke about the “disrespect” Harden had shown his teammates throughout the season.

“Just the approach to training camp, showing up the way he did, the antics off the court,” Cousins told reporters. “I mean, the disrespect started way before (Harden’s public criticism of the team Tuesday night), so this isn’t something that all of a sudden happened last night.”

Cousins made those comments as a response to Harden saying the Rockets are “just not good enough – chemistry, talent-wise, just everything,” following a loss to the Lakers. Harden explained he didn’t think the situation in Houston could be fixed.

Cousins, who signed with the Rockets as a free agent this past November after not playing during the 2019-20 season, was asked if he felt betrayed as Harden’s teammate.

“Me, personally, I don’t feel betrayed at all,” Cousins said. “My interest was playing with John Wall to be brutally honest.”

The Rockets have started the season 3-6 and sit 14th in the Western Conference heading into Wednesday’s slate of games.

“When one through 15 guys are all on the same page and they commit and they know their role and they know what they want to get out of this and that’s to win, it’ll all be fine,” Wall said late Tuesday. “But when you have certain guys in the mix that don’t want to buy in all as one, it’s going to be hard to do anything special or anything good as a basketball team.”

Cousins, Wall and the post-Harden Rockets are next scheduled to play a road game Thursday against the Spurs.

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