Lakers: Why is Demarcus Cousins getting a championship ring?

Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers

Demarcus Cousins is getting a championship ring from the Lakers even though he didn’t actually play for the team during their title run.

Officially, Demarcus Cousins spent eight months with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was waived nine months before the team won the 2019-2020 NBA title. He’s still getting a ring.

Now playing for the Houston, Cousins will be presented with a championship ring when the Rockets travel to Los Angeles later this season.

Cousins’ reaction to the news was fairly stoic. He called it “dope” to be recognized by the team for his influence in the locker room.

Demarcus Cousins didn’t get to play for LA, but he had an impact

The Lakers signed Cousins in July of 2019 with the hopes of him helping their title push with LeBron James. He never got the chance because he tore his ACL before the season started.

Cousins faced a lengthy rehab and had to support the team from the sidelines instead of on the court.

In the end, having a healthy body was more valuable than the presence of the veteran center. He was waived in February of 2020 to make room for Markieff Morris.

Even though he was waived, the Lakers did allow him to remain around the facility for his rehab.

In December of 2020 — a couple of months after Los Angeles beat Miami in the restarted NBA playoffs — Cousins signed a free-agent contract with the Rockets.

This season, he is averaging 8.8 points per game with 7.3 rebounds and 2.5 assists.

The ring will be his first. He spent the first seven years of his career in Sacramento before two seasons with the Pelicans and a season with the Warriors. His stint in San Francisco almost ended with a title victory, but the Warriors ultimately fell to the Raptors in the Finals.

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