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DeMarcus Cousins on playing with Anthony Davis in small ball era

Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins, pelicans

As teams are attempting to duplicate the success of the Golden State Warriors, there is one team who has gone in the opposite direction of small ball in the New Orleans Pelicans. After acquiring DeMarcus Cousins at last year’s trade deadline, he joined Anthony Davis in hopes of establishing the league’s most dominant frontcourt duo.

With Cousins and Davis heading into their first full season together, there are questions if they can succeed in today’s league. In an interview with Chris Mannix of The Vertical, the three-time All-Star believes he can coexist with Davis:

“I think the game is actually playing into our hands,” Cousins said. “I think me and A.D. have a skill set that a lot of bigs don’t have in this league, or the league hasn’t seen in some bigs throughout the history of the game. I think it actually plays into our hands, and we’re just rolling with the punches. I don’t think [a smaller game] will effect me or A.D. at all.

As Cousins mentions, both players have unique skill sets and it will be interesting to see if head coach Alvin Gentry is able to fully utilize them as they eye the postseason for the first time in two years. It also comes at a delicate time as Cousins is set to become an unrestricted free agent following the 2017-18 NBA season.

Heading into the offseason, the Pelicans were looking to bolster their backcourt talent. After re-signing Jrue Holiday to a five-year, $126 million deal, they signed Rajon Rondo and Ian Clark in free agency. With minimal changes around Cousins and Davis, it will be a challenge for the Pelicans in the daunting Western Conference.