DeMarcus Cousins on Kings' woes: 'I've been playing like absolute s---'

OKLAHOMA CITY -- After a miserable road trip for the Sacramento Kings, star DeMarcus Cousins was highly critical of his own play Sunday night.

"I've been playing like s---, man," Cousins said. "That is our problem. It is me. I've been playing like absolute s---."

Cousins went 5-for-20 from the field and 3-of-9 from the free throw line and finished with 13 points in the Kings' 98-95 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Kings blew a seven-point lead in the final three minutes. Cousins shot 1-of-7 and missed three free throws in the final nine minutes.

During the Kings' three-game road trip -- all losses -- Cousins shot a miserable 13-of-53 (25 percent) and averaged just 14 points.

Scouts who have followed the Kings recently have noticed he is not moving as well as he has in the past, and he often trails the play, which hints that he might be hurting or out of shape. Cousins missed three games last week because of a back injury but declined to blame his recent performance on his back.

"I don't want to make any excuses," Cousins said. "I've been playing like s---. No other excuse."

The Kings have lost five of their past six games to fall to 7-15. Cousins is averaging a career-high 25.2 points per game but shooting a career-low 41 percent. His rebounding, assists and steals have also slipped from last season, when he was named to the Western Conference All-Star team for the first time.

He has missed eight games because of back and Achilles injuries, plus a league suspension. The Kings are 1-7 when he doesn't play.

"I've never been in a stretch like this," Cousins said. "I have to stay positive, stay together and get in the gym. I know it's a mental thing right now. It's hard getting the rhythm when you're not seeing the ball go through the basket."