The Kings have shown no inclination to trading Cousins, particularly since they’re in the running for a playoff spot, as Mannix emphasizes. If that dynamic changes, Orlando has enough young pieces and expendables bigs to make an attractive offer for Cousins, Mannix continues. A package that includes Aaron Gordon and Nikola Vucevic would hold some appeal to Sacramento and give the Magic a clearcut franchise player to build around, in Mannix’s view.
Orlando’s glut of power forwards and centers has left Mario Hezonja, the fifth overall pick in 2015, scrounging for minutes despite a lack of floor spacers, Mannix adds. Hezonja would benefit from Orlando paring some frontcourt players.
Naturally, we’ve heard all kinds of rumors and proposals regarding Cousins. The Celtics have been prominently mentioned as another logical trading partner, given their glut of guards and extra draft picks, including the Nets’ first-rounder in June. The Magic are loaded with former lottery picks, so it’s fair to put them in that group of teams with enough assets to entice the Kings.
Cousins recently said he expects to remain put and there’s no rush for the Kings to cash in their biggest asset. He doesn’t become an unrestricted free agent until after the 2017/18 season.