The Sacramento Kings reached an agreement Thursday on a four-year, $62 million extension with 23-year-old center DeMarcus Cousins, according to two people with knowledge of the deal.
The people spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because the deal had not yet been announced. The move doesn’t come as a surprise, as new owner Vivek Ranadive has made Cousins a focal point of his organizational plan since buying the team in late May.
That approach went to a new level last week, when Lakers legend Shaquille O’Neal joined the team as a minority owner and spoke at length about his desire to turn Cousins into the best big man in the game from his new role as mentor. While Cousins has been one of the most controversial young talents in the game because of his sometimes-boorish behavior, his talent is undeniable and the Kings are clearly confident that he can be their franchise centerpiece.