DeMarcus Cousins 'wasn't mad at all' over late benching Saturday

METAIRIE, La. -- DeMarcus Cousins said he wasn't upset with sitting out most of the fourth quarter and the entire overtime period in the New Orleans Pelicans' 125-122 victory Saturday in Charlotte.

"The team was in a good rhythm," Cousins said Monday. "They were playing a good stretch of basketball. I wasn't mad at all. We pulled out a good win. I'm not mad at all."

Though Cousins, 26, said he hasn't sat out during crunch time since maybe he was a rookie, six seasons ago, he said he didn't discuss the matter with Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry afterward.

"It's just how it played out," Cousins said. "Coach made a decision. It is what it is. My job is just to go out there when my name is called. It wasn't, so I was a cheerleader from the bench."

With Cousins out, Anthony Davis shot 10-for-17 from the floor and scored 24 points the rest of the way.

Davis, who turned 24 years old Saturday, finished the game with 46 points (18-for-31), 21 rebounds, a career-high 4 made 3-pointers and 0 turnovers.

"It was just simply a situation where they had a small team out there, they had a tough matchup with AD, we were creating space, guys were making a few shots. So we just decided to go with that group," Gentry said. "That's all it was. It wasn't anything deep or thoughtful, or anything about it. It was just how the game had gone."

Since being traded from the Sacramento Kings during the All-Star break, Cousins is averaging 20.3 points, 12.4 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 8 appearances, in which the Pelicans are 2-6.

"He's just like any other player," Gentry said of Cousins. "He wants to play in the fourth quarter, too. We just happened to be going pretty good. If we played 50 games, he's probably going to be in in the fourth quarter in 48 of them, or something.

The Pelicans are 26-40 overall and five games back of the Denver Nuggets for the eighth and final playoff seed in the Western Conference.

"This is it; let's call it like it is," Gentry said. "We've got to do well this week. I think we've got 16 games left, seven at home total, I think. We just have to start winning games, and winning consistently, if we're going to have any chance at a playoff spot at all."