NBA All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins didn't hold back when asked about the escalating brouhaha between President Donald Trump and the world of sports, saying Trump needs to "get his s*** together."
Throughout media day, the Pelicans were asked about Trump's comments concerning NFL players who protested during the national anthem — comments first made as Trump addressed supporters Friday in Alabama.
Trump later rescinded an invitation for the NBA champion Golden State Warriors to visit the White House after comments from star guard Steph Curry.
Although the Pelicans, who held media day Monday ahead of training camp beginning Tuesday, said they would address how they would approach the controversy during a team dinner Monday night, Cousins took Trump to task when asked for his thoughts.
“With everything that’s going on, it’s sad,” Cousins said. “The leader of our nation, it’s kind of goofy when you think about it. The leader of our nation spends more time on Twitter than actually taking care of situations that are going on, on a daily basis. I could go on and on and I don’t really want to get my personal feelings involved about it, but it’s getting to the point where it’s just silly. I think we need to refocus on the task at hand.
“If you’re going to be in that position, let’s handle the things you said you were going to handle. And some of the things that need to be touched on, we need to bring more awareness to it. … I feel like the least of his concerns should be what’s going on in the NFL. We've got world issues going on and they’re barely being talked about from him, the leader of our nation. He needs to get his (expletive) together.”
General manager Dell Demps echoed the statement from owner Tom Benson which was released Sunday on behalf of the Saints and Pelicans, and added he was heartened by seeing players come together for a cause that’s bigger than themselves.
Coach Alvin Gentry opted to take a different approach, saying he’d like to see the protests channeled into something that would be helpful to the local New Orleans community as well as the state.
Gentry also said he would fully allow his team to choose whichever demonstration they feel is appropriate and would back them without hesitation.
“We live in a great town,” Gentry said. “I love this place. I’ll be honest with you, I absolutely love living here and I think there’s a pride factor of being from New Orleans and living in this town that’s great, and so I think our concentration is how can we, as a team, make it better and improve some of the things that need to be improved.
“As Dell said, I think everybody has their own opinion. I think everyone has the right to say what they want to say. But to me, I just think rather than staying parked there, we have got to decide what we can do to make the city of New Orleans and state of Louisiana, or for that matter the entire country, better. That’s my opinion.”