DeMarcus Cousins has had his share of run-ins with coaches and teammates, so there is something refreshing about the notion of him focusing his orneriness on opponents instead. That’s what he did this week in an in-depth profile by Grantland writer Jonathan Abrams, taking aim at a growing rivalry with the Clippers in general, and Chris Paul in particular.

“It’s just, some players I don’t respect,” Cousins said. “Just their playing style of basketball. I don’t respect it. I feel like it’s basically cheating and I don’t respect a cheater. If that’s your tactic to winning, I don’t respect you.”

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Cousins has been outstanding against the Clippers this season, averaging 24.0 points, 12.7 rebounds and 5.7 assists in three games.

Back on November 23, when the Clippers t

opped the Kings, 103-102 in Los Angeles after Sacramento had come back from a 20-point deficit, Cousins took point guard Isaiah Thomas by the jersey and pulled him away from Paul, who had extended his hand. Thomas said after the game that he wanted to shake hands with Clipper guard Jamal Crawford, who is also from the Seattle area.

“That’s just DeMarcus,” Thomas told reporters. “He gets upset. He doesn’t like anybody on the other team.”

Cousins has amassed 11 technical fouls this season, most in the NBA. Any player who reaches 16 technical fouls receives a one-game suspension.