Another potential one-year rental lies in the toxic Pelicans star DeMarcus Cousins, who didn’t mesh as expected alongside Anthony Davis, or anyone else for that matter. A reunion of Cousins with former teammate Hassan Whiteside seems ironic.
The New Orleans Pelicans have a glut at the 5 position, while the Miami Heat are loaded at the 2. Could Tyler Johnson, Wayne Ellington and Josh McRoberts, or other combinations to create trade equality, be sent to the Pelicans for Cousins? The intention is to prepare cap room for the 2018-19 season.
Pat Riley’s former star and friend, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, stated he’s looking more towards the summer of 2018, than now, to make his move with the Los Angeles Lakers. The two could work together, this season and next, to help their respective franchises create contenders to take on the redoubtable Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers.
Erik Spoelstra has experience dealing with divas and coach killers from the LeBron James and the Big 3 days. Having a locker room loaded with the egos of DeMarcus, Dion and Hassan together would produce plenty of drama, both good or bad, for the media, to say the least. Erik’s greatest challenge would be to keep the Heat Culture intact, with Cousins aboard the bus. If anybody could it, Spo’s the man.
A Goran Dragic, Dion Waiters, James Johnson, Cousins, and Whiteside combination would have the talent to become an Eastern Conference contender this season. Whether they last beyond one campaign, as a functioning unit, is another story.
Should Cousins depart, by next summer, it would leave room for Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson to assume important roles later, after even LeBron James starts showing the wear and tear on his body. The development of the 14th draft pick, alongside Rodney McGruder, Okaro White, the 16th and 17th roster spots, plus G-League pick-ups the Heat seem to have great success in finding, spells for an intriguing 2018 summer scenario.