DeMarcus Cousins recently elected to sign a one-year deal at the mid-level exception with the Golden State Warriors. Given the deal's small monetary value ($5.3 million), many have questioned why the Pelicans didn't hold onto Boogie. Some speculated that Anthony Davis, the team's key franchise player, didn't want to play alongside Cousins any longer.
At NBA Summer League in Las Vegas Monday, Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said those whispers "couldn't be further from the truth."
"Someone said A.D. didn't want DeMarcus back, and that couldn't be further from the truth," Gentry said, according to NOLA.com. "I don't know where that came about, but it couldn't be further from the truth."
The two were noted as friends during their 1.5 years together in New Orleans. They were playing well together until Boogie suffered a debilitating Achilles injury in late January.
"He was great for us. Everyone forgets that we won eight out of 10 games before he went down," Gentry said of Boogie. "With free agency, there are so many things that are involved in it...I think he was good for us, put up big numbers for us, created a ton of mismatches for our situation. I know he'll do well. He's in a great organization now. He's just got to get himself healthy."
The Pelicans were surprisingly successful in the postseason sans-Cousins. They swept the Blazers in the first round before falling to the Warriors in five games in the West semifinals. New Orleans replaced Cousins with yet another former Kentucky big man—Julius Randle.