Los Angeles Lakers center DeMarcus Cousins was accused of making verbal threats to his former girlfriend in August, leading police in Mobile, Alabama to issue a warrant for his arrest on a misdemeanor domestic violence charge.
When the allegation first surfaced, the Lakers released a statement saying that they were aware of the situation and were in the process of gathering information. At the team’s Media Day on Friday, Lakers General Manager Rob Pelinka issued the team’s first comments since that original statement.
“I think the most important thing to say is the Lakers as an organization take allegations of domestic violence extremely seriously. That said, when allegations are made for any NBA player, the league takes over and handles that investigation,” Pelinka said.
“We’re going to abide by the league’s lead on this as that’s being investigated, and because it’s a legal matter, we can’t really speak any further about that right now. He’s a member of our roster and a part of the team, and we’ll just have to wait for guidance from the league on next steps.”
Cousins, who last played for the Golden State Warriors before signing with the Lakers as a free agent in July, tore his ACL during an offseason workout and is likely to miss the entire season whether he is on the Lakers’ roster or not. The Lakers were recently granted a $1.75 million Disabled Player Exception for Cousins, which would allow them to a sign a replacement for the center if they cut him.
Earlier this week, The Athletic reported that despite the allegations and injury, the Lakers were planning to “integrate” Cousins “into the team’s culture.”