Bulls Pelicans Basketball

New Orleans Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins goes to the basket against Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez in the first half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Monday, Jan. 22, 2018. The Pelicans won in double overtime, 132-128.

AP photo / Gerald Herbert

DeMarcus Cousins sat in front of his locker Monday night, ready to field questions from reporters.

A stat sheet — one displaying one of the most incredible lines in NBA history — was floating in the bucket of water and ice, right there alongside Cousins' feet.

Cousins was probably too exhausted to bend over and get it out of the cold water.

And really, on this night, who could blame him?

Cousins had just had a night that hadn't been done in so long that it was sorta hard to figure out the last time anyone had done it.

The Pelicans' big man put up numbers that looked like something you'd see in an NBA All-Star Game, where defense is nonexistent — 44 points, 24 rebounds and 10 assists.

Cousins even got "M-V-P" chants when he stepped to the free-throw line late in this 132-128 double overtime victory over the Bulls. Those chants usually are reserved for teammate Anthony Davis, but Cousins more than deserved them after this performance.

It was the first time a player had recorded at least 40 points, 20 rebounds and 10 assists in a game in 46 years.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, playing with the Milwaukee Bucks at the time, scored 44 points, grabbed 20 rebounds and dished out 11 assists against the Phoenix Suns in 1972, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Kareem's game doesn't even show up on NBA References, another source for NBA records.

According to their records, Wilt Chamberlain recorded the last 40-20-10 game, back in 1968.

Either way, Cousins joined some exclusive company.

The only players to ever post a 40-20-10 stat line (according to Elias) are guys so iconic that a first name only is sufficient when talking about them.

Wilt, who did it six times. Kareem. Elgin. Oscar.

And now Boogie.

"It's cool to be in company with a guy like Wilt," Cousins said. "He's a guy that put up video-game numbers his entire career. So just to have a little game like his is pretty cool."

He shot 13 of 29 from the floor, knocking down 5 of 11 3-pointers. Seven of his rebounds came on the offensive end. One of his best assists was a floor-length pass that surely had to make former Saints quarterback Archie Manning, who was in attendance, proud.

Anthony Davis, who finished with 34 points and nine rebounds before fouling out, called Boogie's performance "legendary."

"DeMarcus had a stat line for the ages," said Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry. "It's one of the best performances I have seen ever in this league."

The numbers set Twitter on fire.

Even LeBron James tweeted at Cousins after the game.

"Yo @boogiecousins chill out man!! Sheesh!!! Super sick stat line," James tweeted.

Pelicans guard Rajon Rondo, in his 12th NBA season, had this to say after watching Cousins' performance.

"What he did tonight was unbelievable," Rondo said. " He carried the team and put them on his back. I think he can be one of the best to ever do it at his position.

"He's putting up crazy numbers, but he's also making his teammates better. He's doing the intangibles, taking charges, blocking shots and he's in damn near every pick-and-roll. The numbers are amazing, but there are so many other things he's doing that aren't showing up in the stat book."

Cousins has drawn 23 charges this season, tied for the league lead with Toronto Raptors' guard Kyle Lowry.

And if you play fantasy basketball, he's your guy, too.

According to NBA.com, Cousins averages 53.5 fantasy points per game, second in the league and just 0.1 points behind league leader Russell Westbrook.

But for Cousins, the only numbers that really mattered were Pelicans 132, Bulls 128. It was the Pelicans' sixth win in eight games, moving them to sixth in the Western Conference standings, a game behind fifth-place Oklahoma City. They had to erase an 18-point fourth-quarter deficit to do it.

"I'm just glad we won," Cousins said. "It wouldn't mean s*** if we didn't win."

Cousins was pleased with his points, pleased with his rebounds and pleased with his assists.

The number he was most impressed with, though, was 51:31.

That's how many minutes he played, a career high.

His strength coach teased him after the game, asking if he wanted to lift weights.

"If I had some energy, we would have fought," Cousins joked.

But of course, he didn't have the energy.

There was a stat sheet floating in ice at his feet to prove it.

Follow Rod Walker on Twitter, @rwalkeradvocate.