It may be a new season, but we are still seeing the good, the bad and the ugly sides of Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins.
The 26-year-old is still showing that he's one of the best big men in the game by averaging 26.6 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.1 blocks a night in the Kings' opening 11 games of the new campaign.
However, that is once again being overshadowed by his temperamental issues as he's continuing to rack up technical fouls and get involved in confrontations with referees and opposing players.
Cousins' six years in Sacramento have not been enjoyable for him and he is constantly involved in trade rumours as many see a break-up between the player and the franchise as the best and most obvious solution.
According to the Kings' minority owner Shaquille O'Neal, that could take place sooner rather than later.
Because these rumours have surfaced on several occasions before, it would normally be taken with a pinch of salt, but as it's coming from somebody involved in the organisation, it should be taken seriously this time.
“In the previous years, he’s been hot-headed, he hasn’t shown great leadership qualities yet,” O'Neal said on Inside the NBA. "He hasn't shown those leadership qualities, and that's why I'm hearing talk that if things don't start to become correct, they may be looking to go in a different direction."
Shaq has always been a strong believer in Cousins and since becoming involved with the franchise he has no doubt been in his ear and given him advice and tried to make him a better player.
But this revelation by the Hall of Famer casts doubt over whether the All-Star center will even end the campaign in Sacramento. He will become a free agent in 2018 and the chances of him re-signing appear very slim.
Therefore, it would make sense for the California-based organisation to trade him in February to get the best value for him, thus giving his potential new team a year and a half to convince him to commit his long-term future to them.