George Karl has coached several NBA teams, and his departures from almost all of them came with some degree of controversy. He infamously feuded with star players like Ray Allen, Carmelo Anthony and Kenyon Martin and was fired by the Denver Nuggets in the same season he won Coach of the Year. Most infamous, though, were his battles with DeMarcus Cousins with the Sacramento Kings.
Karl reportedly tried to get the Kings to trade Cousins in 2015, to which Cousins replied on Twitter with a snake emoji. He was hardly the first player to compare Karl to a snake, though, as Anthony, J.R. Smith, Ty Lawson and Andre Iguodala had all done so at various times. Karl was eventually fired by the Kings, and Cousins was soon traded. Both have seen their stock in the NBA decline since. Karl has not coached in the NBA since leaving the Kings. Cousins has suffered a number of serious injuries.
And so, on April Fools’ Day, Karl decided to joke about a potential reunion, saying that both were headed back to the Kings.
Karl has been available to be hired for years. Cousins was waived by the Lakers to fit Markieff Morris onto their roster. Both are therefore available to be signed, so without knowing the context, this prank would almost seem believable were it not for the coronavirus grinding all NBA transactions to a halt.
Karl and Cousins will never reunite. In all likelihood, Karl has coached his final NBA game, and while Cousins’ future is uncertain, even in his current state he likely wouldn’t be too thrilled about the prospect of working with the man he once called a snake again. But that’s the joy of April Fools’ Day. For a moment, jokes like this almost seem possible.