3. DeMarcus Cousins
DeMarcus Cousins' days of being one of the league's top talents were a thing of the past by the time the Rockets signed him. Understandably so, as Cousins suffered significant injuries to his lower extremities in the preceding years.
Cousins was essentially added as a back-up center for Christian Wood, who was viewed as a core piece for the franchise at the time.
Cousins averaged 9.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 33.6 percent from long-range as a reserve, and remained the foul merchant that he's been known to be. But although Cousins was a shell of himself on the court, his true value was as a veteran presence in the locker room.
This was pivotal at the time, as the Rockets were dealing with James Harden's trade demand, leaving Stephen Silas caught in the crosshairs as a first-time head coach. What made matters worse was the fact that none of the players on the roster had Harden's cache or his tenure with the franchise.
Cousins became a sounding board for the team and was vocal about how he felt Harden was being unfair to his teammates, leading to Harden's eventual trade. The Rockets eventually released Cousins, allowing him to sign with the LA Clippers as a rotational big.
Cousins spent the 2021-22 season playing for the Milwaukee Bucks and Denver Nuggets but found it rather challenging to find work in 2022-23. Cousins most recently played in the Baloncesto Superior Nacional league of Puerto Rico, where he averaged 20.4 points, 10.9 rebounds, and 4.5 assists and led the Guaynabo Mets to the Semifinals.