OK, yesterday’s crazy, off-the wall conspiracy theory didn’t go over well. I’m not sure whether that was because it was a crazy, off-the wall conspiracy theory or because it ended with Detroit drafting Al-Farouq Aminu. What people think of this post should make the distinction clear, considering I think most Pistons fans would love to get DeMarcus Cousins today.
What does William Wesley do?
Henry Abbott of TrueHoop published an excellent piece yesterday about the enigma that is William Wesley, and in it, he sums up Wesley’s objectives as it relates to players:
In the end, that’s Wesley’s message. Take care of your own business, on and off the court. Get your degree. Run your affairs. Show up to practice. Make a lot of money. Players want those things, and that’s why they trust him.
I also want relay a William Wesley story from Bill Simmons:
So it’s 2:45 in the morning on Friday night. All the Dallas bars and parties have either closed down or stopped letting people in. I’m standing on Main Street with a bunch of people, including Worldwide Wes, the renowned NBA power broker who’s really a cross between Confucius, a benevolent uncle and The Wolf in "Pulp Fiction" to assorted NBA superstars and up-and-coming stars. Known as "Uncle Wes" to the players, he carries more weight within the league than basically anybody. Because he keeps such a low profile, I could never figure out why. Which is why I went out of my way to spend some time with him on Friday night.
Back to Main Street: We’re standing with a young player who wants the night to keep going. The young player pushes to find another bar even though the odds are against it. Uncle Wes makes a face. He’s squashing this right now.
"Nothing good can happen at this point," Wes explains simply. "You can’t chase the night. When the night is over, the night is over. That’s just the way it is. You just gotta wake up tomorrow and hope for a better day."
Uncle Wes had spoken. I am not exaggerating by saying it’s a strangely profound moment. Within 15 seconds, our group splinters in three directions to look for cabs. I find one with my friend Connor. We climb in. We look at each other.
"I will never be able to properly explain that story to anyone," Connor said.
Agreed. You can’t chase the night. It was like hearing a human fortune cookie. I went back to my hotel, took my contacts out, crawled into bed and hoped for a better day. These are the things that happen at NBA All-Star Weekend.
After reading both those excerpts, this is how I’d sum up what Wesley does:
He helps players do what they’re supposed to do.
How does this pertain to DeMarcus Cousins?
In their live mock draft yesterday, Simmons and Chad Ford discussed which teams would be the best fit for Cousins. Simmons listed the Hornets, Rockets, Pistons and Jazz as good fits. Ford went a step further:
Detroit would be the perfect fit for Cousins. They’ve been trying to move up to get him. Have been reluctant to part with Tayshaun Prince to do it. If I were Joe D, I’d probably pull the trigger. They are desperate for a big man and Joe D’s done a good job handling guys like Rasheed Wallace.
If Wesley’s deal is helping players do what they’re supposed to do, wouldn’t getting Cousins to a team where he’s more likely to succeed be a big part of that?
Would World Wide Wes help Cousins?
Abbott writes Wes wouldn’t just get involved on his own:
As players describe it, they tend to seek him out, not the other way around.
Abbott also implies Wesley is in Cousins’ corner – even though the big man didn’t sign with agent Leon Rose (which is actually more common for Wesley’s guys than many think).
Wesley couldn’t have been closer to this year’s Kentucky players, and yet John Wall selected Dan Fegan and DeMarcus Cousins signed up with John Greig.
Although I don’t know for certain, I think it’s a safe assumption Wesley would do what he can to help Cousins succeed. After all, Cousins played for Jon Calipari, a noted friend of Wesley.
Later in the mock draft, Simmons said:
My bold prediction is that, somehow, some way, Detroit will end up with Demarcus Cousins in this draft.
If that happens, I think there’s a decent chance World Wide Wes will somehow be involved.