NBA trade rumors about DeMarcus Cousins are already brewing. The New Orleans Pelicans are off to a poor start in the 2017-18 NBA season and already social media is buzzing about the team shipping off Cousins. As the All-Star center begins the final season of his current contract, could the Pelicans be placed in a position where the best option for the team is to simply move on?

Some Pelicans fans have pointed to the Anthony Davis injury as a reason for the front office to give the DeMarcus Cousins experiment a little more time. The Pelicans acquired Cousins from the Sacramento Kings in exchange for Tyreke Evans, Langston Galloway, Buddy Hield, a first-round pick, and a second-round pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.

It was considered a bit of a steal for an All-Star center, but the Pelicans have not found success with him on the court.

Can Davis and Cousins co-exist?

Having two All-Star big men on the court at the same time is something a lot of coaches would love to have. That was the thinking of the front office in New Orleans, as what team could stop a tandem of Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins in the low post? It didn’t work to end the 2016-17 NBA season, as the Pelicans lost six of their last 10 games to fall way short of the playoffs. Now the team has started 1-3 this season and the murmurs have already surfaced again.

Regarding the NBA trade rumors about Cousins, most of them are fan-generated, but a number of analysts have mentioned that this is the final year of his contract.

It means that if the New Orleans Pelicans continue to struggle, that the team could look to unload him for some younger talent before the NBA trade deadline. If the franchise doesn’t plan to sign him to a long-term contract extension, then they could look to get back almost anything in return.

How is Cousins doing this season?

Through the first four games of the 2017-18 NBA season, DeMarcus Cousins is averaging 31.0 points, 12.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists, and 3.3 blocks per game. It is immediately obvious that he isn’t the reason that the New Orleans Pelicans are continuing to lose games. On the surface, those numbers are absolutely spectacular, suggesting the 27-year-old center could bring back a nice package of players if the franchise did decide to part with him.

Anthony Davis should be back on the court soon, meaning more time to work with Cousins and try to get the Pelicans back to the postseason. Being in the Southwest Division is already tough, but the Pelicans have to deal with an improved Los Angeles Lakers team that also wants to take a playoff spot from someone. The Portland Trail Blazers have also taken a step forward, despite losing the services of Allen Crabbe. With the Western Conference getting even better than last year, too many early-season struggles could doom the Pelicans. That leaves a very small window for the team to get on track before all of the NBA analysts will be mentioning DeMarcus Cousins trade rumors again.