Nick Friedell: Myers still doesn’t want to put a return date on when DeMarcus Cousins will be back but he likes the progress Cousins continues to make in rehab. “I think we’re nearing the finish line,” Myers said. Warriors still have extra roster spot to add center via trade or buyout market.
There may not be an NBA player more excited to ring in the new year than DeMarcus Cousins. “It’s been the longest year of my life,” Cousins, 28, told The Undefeated. “I’m looking forward to the new year and the new blessings. New tests. New excitement. Fresh year. Fresh start. … “I’ll put it as simple as possible, 2018 was the most difficult and challenging year of my life. I’m extremely excited for 2019.”
Cousins is expected to take a leave of absence from the Warriors to attend his grandmother’s funeral on Jan. 4 in his hometown of Mobile. “She was the foundation of the family,” a teary-eyed Cousins said. “So, I’m going into 2019 with that. She was everything for us. … She was the root of our family. To lose a vital piece like that to our family is devastating to everyone. “She lived an incredible and very long life. She went out happy. She went out painless. I couldn’t have asked for a better life for my grandma.”
Mark Medina: Steve Kerr said DeMarcus Cousins’ scrimmage went “fine,” but he said there’s a reason why there was a curtain up. In other words, Steve didn’t offer details
“It’s not about my Achilles, not about one specific part of my body; it’s my entire body. It’s about being out of shape, taking a year off basketball, then jumping into an NBA game. That leaves you pretty open to get another injury, like a hammy strain.” The Warriors are also going to ask him to defend like he never has before. They know the teams that matter will target him, will drag him out on the perimeter, will leverage the Warriors’ switching scheme to test his recovered leg, his lateral movement (never one of his strengths) and willingness to defend at a playoff level, a foreign world to Cousins.
The Warriors could wait, could win while they stall, could toss the idea of him into the distance and yawn toward a 22-11 record while he recovered on the side, out of sight. But then is quickly becoming now. The holidays are here, January is approaching, Cousins still isn’t ready and the Warriors are starting to twiddle their thumbs a bit. “It’s almost 2019,” one team source said. “The clock’s starting to tick.”
But other times, he’ll show up gloomy. There won’t be as much interest in his work, life in his voice, optimism in his vibe, movement in his legs, hope in the process. “It’s a lot of sore days,” Cousins told The Athletic. “There are days I really ache. I do a lot of lower-body training. So there are days where my legs just feel like cement blocks and I can barely move. Then there are days where I feel like a feather on the floor.”
There’s a belief within the Warriors that the first few weeks of Cousins’ return will be crucial, that the early days will become the arrow that points this experiment down either a fruitful or frustrating path. There’s been a sigh of relief that, at least for now, Cousins is projected to join a healthy rotation and relaxed atmosphere, not the injured, frayed November mess.
After facing three more questions about DeMarcus Cousins’ rehab progress, Kerr, a little bit tired of the subject, delivered an answer that should end any bubbling optimism that Cousins could make his return before the calendar year ends. “We’re not really that close,” Kerr said. “I don’t want this to be about: ‘Hey, we’re right there.’ We’re not right there. It’s still going to be some time. We’re going to be patient and continue to give DeMarcus the space he needs to prepare. When the time is right, we’ll have some things planned for him.”
Connor Letourneau: Steve Kerr on Cousins: “We’re not really that close (to his return). ... It’s still going to be some time.”
Mark Medina: Steve Kerr said Rick Celebrini informed him that DeMarcus Cousins "had a really good day" with his practice today at Santa Cruz.
Nick Friedell: Kerr says the plan is for DeMarcus Cousins to practice with Santa Cruz Monday. Cousins practiced with Warriors on Sunday. Still no target date set for his return.
After practicing twice this week with Golden State’s G League affiliate in Santa Cruz, center DeMarcus Cousins isn’t necessarily close to making his Warriors debut. "That’s why we still don’t have a timetable," Golden State head coach Steve Kerr said. "He needs to feel confident with the Achilles, his conditioning, his rhythm, his timing and everything else. We’re not going to rush him back. We’re going to help him through that process. When it happens, it happens."
After running Cousins through a practice Wednesday morning, Santa Cruz Warriors head coach Aaron Miles conceded that Cousins is "probably not moving as well as he wants to right now."
There had been speculation in recent weeks that he would return sometime around New Year’s Day. That seems increasingly unlikely, with a February return probably more plausible.
There is still no timetable for Cousins' return from a torn Achilles tendon, but the four-time All-Star center is definitely getting close. "We want to make sure he's really comfortable with his conditioning and movement before we put him out there," Kerr said. "Everything has come along nicely. This is not about a doctor saying he can't play. It's more about when he's ready to go out there and perform well."
“If my life depended on it, I can go out and play a game,” said Cousins, who admitted he doesn’t have a target return date in mind. “But I want to be 100 percent or as close to 100 percent as I can be. I want my body in tip-top shape — it’s not even about the Achilles. It’s about my other body parts and making sure everything is fine-tuned and in the best shape possible to go out and play a full game.”
“It was my idea,” Cousins said. “I wanted to come down because before I wanted to step foot on the floor, I wanted to get in some type of basketball rhythm. That’s something that me and the trainers kind of butted heads about. They had their idea of getting ready for a game and I have mine. So the last thing I wanted to do was go from doing drill work to two-on-two or three-on-three [scrimmages] straight into an NBA game.”
Adam Johnson: Cousins on possibly playing in Santa Cruz: "I don't know, we'll see what happens. I'll discuss with Bob (Myers) and some of the guys at the top and once we come together and figure something out I'm pretty sure you guys will know."
Logan Murdock: DeMarcus Cousins on his Achilles rehab: "It's really tested me as a person, as a man, as an athlete. I've had a lot of dark days, a lot of good days. I've questioned myself a lot but I've found a way to overcome all those bad feelings so I see the light at the end of the tunnel."
Logan Murdock: DeMarcus Cousins said he played 5-on-5 in 3 six-seven minute quarters. Boogie said he could play in an NBA game if his “life depended on it.” pic.twitter.com/SiW7L54xLu
Ohm Youngmisuk: DeMarcus Cousins says he’s gone through “a lot of dark days, a lot of good days” and has “questioned” himself a lot. But he says he’s “grown” a ton since injuring his Achilles. Cousins says his wind was better than expected today and that he’s not worried about his Achilles. pic.twitter.com/MzjiNvAUH1
Marc J. Spears: Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins is expected to practice with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors on Monday, a source told @espn @TheUndefeated.
Nick Friedell: No new update on Cousins. Kerr likes the way he’s progressing in practices but no target date set. Warriors didn’t scrimmage today.
Adam Johnson: Spoke with @GLeagueWarriors GM Kent Lacob about the possibility of DeMarcus Cousins practicing/playing with Santa Cruz. Said that Cousins is excited about the opportunity to play in the G League.
Reid Forgrave: Just watched Boogie Cousins drain 8 threes in a row in warm-ups here in Milwaukee. He looks great; Steve Kerr expects him back within a few weeks. A fully healthy Warriors are going to be SCARY.
After the Warriors’ practice Sunday afternoon at Detroit Mercy, I watched for about 20 minutes as Cousins participated in a 5-on-5 scrimmage. My biggest takeaway was that, if it were the playoffs, he could play now and contribute. He was throwing down alley-oop dunks and moving with relative ease. At this point, Cousins just needs to improve his conditioning a bit to be completely game-ready.
In the immediate, the loss isn’t as concerning. Cousins is entering the final stages of his rehab and should debut somewhere around the New Year. He took part in a scrimmage after practice on Sunday in Detroit and dunked a few times. “DeMarcus is making some strides,” Kerr said. “He’s looking a lot better to me the last couple days, the intensity of his workouts. He took part in every aspect of practice. … He will fully take part in every practice we have this week, every shootaround.”
Anthony Slater: DeMarcus Cousins is “making strides,” Steve Kerr said. He will fully take part in every Warriors practice from here on out. pic.twitter.com/yHfbaZNp8r
Warriors’ center DeMarcus Cousins is targeting a return from his torn Achilles sometime after Christmas, sources told the Bay Area News Group. According to those sources, the determination was made during a meeting on Friday between Cousins and Golden State’s training staff, including head trainer Rick Celebrini.
There have been no setbacks in his recovery process and the decision to push his target date back was made so Cousins can regain his conditioning and enter the lineup at peak form. ... Cousins – who signed a one-year, $5.2 million deal in July – participated in a scrimmage alongside Stephen Curry Saturday before the team’s 117-116 victory over the Kings. According to a player in the scrimmage, Cousins looked “solid.” The scrimmages have been a part of Cousins’ new six-day a week regimen with the team in anticipation of his pending return.
Mark Medina: Steve Kerr says there's no official update on DeMarcus Cousins. Kerr said that Cousins keeps advancing with his rehab program. He's ramped up conditioning, but hasn't scrimmaged yet. Possible update next week.
Mark Medina: Steve Kerr says there's no official update on DeMarcus Cousins. Kerr said that Cousins keeps advancing with his rehab program. He's ramped up conditioning, but hasn't scrimmaged yet. Possible update next week
Eddie Sefko: DeMarcus Cousins just came out to the court and he made a wrong turn. He got halfway to the Mavericks' bench and realized he needed to make a U-turn. Cousins, by the way, has been doing two-on-two work and is progressing in his comeback from ACL, coach Steve Kerr said.
Mark Medina: DeMarcus Cousins getting some full-court non-contact work in. pic.twitter.com/ipWVDX2ruh
DeMarcus Cousins took part in practice with the Golden State Warriors for the first time, although there was still no timetable for his return to game action. Cousins joined the Warriors in their workout Thursday night in New York, where they will play the Knicks on Friday. The All-Star center's work on the court thus far had been limited to individual and 1-on-1 drills as he recovers from a ruptured left Achilles tendon.
Mark Medina: Warrior say DeMarcus Cousins "in the near future," will be "integrated into controlled aspects of team practices, although no scrimmages at this point."
As for the game, Cousins sat on the bench in his warmups and uniform, instead of behind the bench in a suit, initially stationed next to Andre Iguodala before Iguodala entered the game. That was part of the plan hatched by the Warriors coaching staff. “The only thing we talked about last week was that we wanted him on the bench with the guys,” Kerr said. “He wanted to be there. It wasn’t like we had to twist his arm or anything. We want him out there sitting next to his teammates, sitting next to coaches, communicating and seeing how it all works with us. He was really communicating with Damian quite a bit tonight. It was good to see.”
Mark Medina: DeMarcus Cousins still doing non-contact drills. But Steve Kerr said he has increased workload with team - 5-o-0 skill work and defensive drills.
I’ll be back at 100% this season. A year from now, looking back, I know this is going to be the best decision I ever made.
A day into Warriors training camp, DeMarcus Cousins is making solid progress in his rehab from a torn left Achilles tendon. “I don’t think it will take too long before he takes part in practice,” Golden State head coach Steve Kerr said Tuesday afternoon. “But for right now, it’s important he gets his full workout with the training staff.” The 6-foot-11 center, entering his eighth NBA season, will be re-evaluated by team trainers Oct. 22, which rules him out of the team’s five preseason games and its first three regular-season games. Odds are, of course, that he’ll miss more time.
“DeMarcus did a ton of movement stuff, court work, ballhandling and shooting stuff on his own,” Kerr said, “but he did not take part with the team. We’re just taking it slowly with him.” Added 6-foot-9 forward Jordan Bell, who is competing for the starting center job in Cousins’ absence: “He’s getting better every day. These last two weeks, he’s been working out with little drills that we do. “He can still shoot and can still handle the ball. He’s obviously not 100 percent healthy yet, but you can tell every single day he’s getting better and better.”
Cousins is motivated to return better than ever and believes that the Warriors have scary potential: "My drive has only increased. I'm seriously like a madman right now. I think you guys will see a new DeMarcus on the floor. I can't wait to get to that point just to show all the work I have put in, into this injury. I think you'll see it when the product is on the floor. But when it comes to this team, I mean, it's basically there. You can see it on paper. On paper it looks great. Of course we've got to go in and put the work in, but the potential is scary for this team, and it's on us to bring that potential out."
Still, the Warriors aren’t ready to set a target date for his return. A loaded roster ensures that Cousins can take all the time he needs to return to the court. “I know there’s a narrative that we’ll save DeMarcus for the playoffs, and that’s inaccurate,” general manager Bob Myers said. “When he can play, he’ll play. We won’t rush him, but we also won’t hold him back.”
Nick Friedell: DeMarcus Cousins says his rehab from an Achilles injury has been 'a grind' but he hasn't had any setbacks over the last few months. He says people will see a whole new player when he returns to the floor.
Anthony Slater: DeMarcus Cousins: "I'm getting my feet back under me. Starting to feel like an athlete again."
Anthony Slater: Bob Myers updates DeMarcus Cousins' status: "He's not able to go full speed yet, but he'll get into some drills. Non-contact stuff."
Mark Medina: Bob Myers said DeMarcus Cousins will be reevaluated in another 4 weeks. But Myers said he likes his progress. Myers; "We won't rush him. But we also won't hold him back."
Do you have any read on where DeMarcus is health-wise right now? I know he won’t be ready for the start of camp next week, but how much do you think he’ll be able to do, how much will be around the practice portions? Steve Kerr: Well, he’s been around the last few weeks. He rehabbed in Las Vegas over the summer, but he’s been here (in the Bay Area) the last few weeks, settling into his new home and new life. He’s on the court every day working. He’s so skilled. He’s got such great hands, shoots the ball so well, fantastic passer. He’s been working on all that stuff. So he’ll do as much as he can during camp and that will be decided by our training staff, headed by Rick Celebrini and Drew Yoder. We’ll confer with them every day.
Do you have any read on where DeMarcus is health-wise right now? I know he won’t be ready for the start of camp next week, but how much do you think he’ll be able to do, how much will be around the practice portions? Steve Kerr: "Well, he’s been around the last few weeks. He rehabbed in Las Vegas over the summer, but he’s been here (in the Bay Area) the last few weeks, settling into his new home and new life. He’s on the court every day working. He’s so skilled. He’s got such great hands, shoots the ball so well, fantastic passer. He’s been working on all that stuff. So he’ll do as much as he can during camp and that will be decided by our training staff, headed by Rick Celebrini and Drew Yoder. We’ll confer with them every day."
In a brand new clip from the upcoming Resurgence docuseries about DeMarcus Cousins, the Warriors newest center dunks for the first time since tearing his Achilles in February last season.
Just as the Warriors have done in the past two regular seasons, they have placed higher priority on Cousins’ long-term health than establishing a short-term timetable. Still, Cousins recently posted a video of him hoisting jump shots and driving to the basket. “He’s right on schedule. He hasn’t had any setbacks. He’s doing well,” Kerr said of Cousins. “Beyond that, there’s nothing. No prediction. Especially with an Achilles injury, you have to wait and see how the player responds once he’s on the court and moving at full speed.”
Logan Murdock: DeMarcus Cousins said he talked with Rudy Gay, Wes Matthews, Kobe Bryant, Dominique Wilkins and teammate Jonas Jerebko about his Achilles. “It’s an injury that can be overcome”
Jerebko would know, seeing that he’s recovered from similar injury himself. “He’s going to be back no problem,” Jerebko said of Cousins. “I haven’t had any problems with it. I took my time. It took quite some time but I did my rehab right and I know he’s going to be back.”
Question: He has said he was aiming to be ready for the season. That seems to have cooled. Where do you think target-wise he could potentially try to return? Myers: I don’t think we’ll know until he does another appointment. He has an appointment in the middle of July and then we’ll know. I think I’ve heard on track, the surgery is somewhere between 8-10 months from the time you have it. But for us, it won’t be: We need you to get out there tonight. It’ll be ramping it up slowly. You can’t really tell with any guy, him or any guy, until they get on the court and do certain things. The goal is for us to have him in the playoffs. That doesn’t mean we’ll wait for the playoffs. When he’s ready to play, he’ll play. We just don’t know when that will be.
If some of the NBA staffers occupying Thomas & Mack felt an unexpected shiver run through their bodies, it might have something to do with the next thing Brand said about Cousins: “I think he’s going to destroy the league once he comes back.” Brand then indicated that “destroy the league” might even be a tempered take, moderated based on his position. “I’m on a management staff, so I can’t talk that much about it,” he started, “but people are going to feel ridiculous for not giving him that money, in my opinion.”
Tim Bontemps: Warriors general manager Bob Myers says there’s no definitive timeline on when DeMarcus Cousins will play, but that, “When he’s ready to play, he’ll play.” Says goal is for him to be ready for the playoffs, not opening night.
Michael Lee: DeMarcus Cousins: “Any doubt from anybody, I use it as fuel. It doesn't matter if it's basketball or life in general. I've always came up being a kid that never accepted nos or somebody telling me something that I couldn't do something. It's a gift & a curse. I'm very stubborn.”
After harboring hopes of returning from an Achilles tear by training camp, DeMarcus Cousins scaled back his expectations while talking to reporters in Las Vegas on Friday. The All-Star center, who officially signed with the Golden State Warriors, told media members that he would re-take the court "when I'm ready." "I was aiming for training camp, but I've kind of communicated with the staff and the coaches," Cousins said. "It's kind of up in the air. It'll be when I'm ready, one hundred percent ready."
Optimists suggest he could return as early as December or even late November. (Cousins told Spears he expects to be ready for training camp.) The Warriors will afford him a longer timeline if need be. It would not be a shock if he doesn't appear in a real game until around Christmas, sources say.
Marc J. Spears: Golden State Warriors newcomer DeMarcus Cousins told ESPN's The Undefeated that he had no significant contract offers when free agency arrived, but had already mentally prepared himself for possible disappointment due to his recovery from his Achilles' tendon injury. Cousins...
Carl Steward: Words from former NBA standout Elton Brand, who suffered Cousins' injury: "No one’s really recovered from that Achilles injury and come back at the same level."
In Golden State, Cousins will team with four fellow All-Stars in the starting lineup in Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and Draymond Green. Cousins is expected to be healthy for the early part of the regular season, league sources said, but this move signifies his determination to win.
Cousins has been rehabilitating primarily in his offseason home of Las Vegas and has previously told The Undefeated that he could be ready by the start of training camp. Cousins received phone calls from the Pelicans and the Los Angeles Lakers on the first day of NBA free agency on Sunday, a source told The Undefeated's Marc Spears.
Anthony Slater: DeMarcus Cousins tore his achilles on January 26th. The Warriors open camp in late September, eight months later. Should be on the back end of his rehab.
Chris Mannix: In a weird way, this is perfect for Cousins. Rehab slowly, come back whenever, win a ring and enter free agency next summer, when cap space will be everywhere.
October 19, 2020 | 11:01 am EDT Update
Not every NBA evaluator loves LaMelo Ball, whose shooting and professionalism have been questioned by some around the league, even if they still have him at or near the top of their board. And not everyone trusts Anthony Edwards’ style and impact or sees James Wiseman’s upside or value in today’s NBA. Sources tell B/R the Minnesota Timberwolves are high on Toppin. The question is whether they’d be willing to take him first overall or if they’d only draft the big man out of Dayton in a trade-down scenario.
Multiple NBA front office members told B/R they feel they can mask Toppin’s defensive weaknesses by playing him at center, where he won’t guard as much around the perimeter and can still use his athleticism for shot-blocking at the rim. Toppin’s age (22) has also rarely come up as a deterrent. Teams sound persuaded by his offense, which is something the Timberwolves (No. 24 in offensive rating), Hawks (No. 25), Cavaliers (No. 26), Hornets (No. 28) and Bulls (No. 29) could obviously use.
Multiple sources have emphatically said Milwaukee will not look to trade Antetokounmpo if he passes on the extension. Instead, the Bucks will try to improve their roster and use the next year to show Antetokounmpo why he should stay. Waiting would give Antetokounmpo maximum leverage over Milwaukee over the next 12 months. If the Bucks are willing to add to their payroll to improve the team — something ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski has reported they are — Milwaukee could chase a significant upgrade in trades (despite being short on prime assets).
The Indiana Pacers can offer an extension beginning at 120% of Oladipo’s salary for the 2020-21 season — a deal that would start around $26 million, a few million per year below what he could sign on a max contract next offseason as an unrestricted free agent. Oladipo, who suffered a torn quadriceps tendon in January 2019 and then struggled upon returning this year, could want to come back next season and try to prove he’s still the All-NBA player he was in 2018.
The Raptors have two primary goals this offseason: re-sign guard Fred VanVleet, and do so without eating too much into their max cap space for 2021. According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, any VanVleet deal around four years and $80 million should keep Toronto in the superstar race next offseason. But things get dicey if the Raptors start competing with bigger offers for one of their most important players.
October 19, 2020 | 8:44 am EDT Update
Speaking on the latest Bulls Talk Podcast with K.C. Johnson, Tom Haberstroh said he’s expecting Karnišovas to pursue a move up in his first draft as executive vice president of basketball operations. “I think [Karnišovas] might move up, because I think No. 1 with Minnesota and No. 2 (with Golden State) is going to be readily available,” Haberstroh said. “I would be surprised if you didn’t see Charlotte (at No. 3) or Chicago move up in the draft.”
For now, there is a leaguewide moratorium on transactions while the NBA and NBPA hammer out modifications to the CBA in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic-affected 2019-20 season. But come draft night, Haberstroh thinks the floodgates could open. “I also just think people are going to be more trigger-happy, make some deals because they’ve been so far away, so far removed from real NBA stuff that I do think there’s going to be a circus on draft night with the No. 1 pick,” he said on the podcast. “Top five I just think it’s just going to be all hands on deck.”
It will be the market, likely even more than heartstrings for the Heat, that will decide whether the Heat have to punt on 2021 cap space or punt on those players. For example, if retaining Crowder becomes an issue, there are viable Plan Bs out there. One, for example, could be Paul Millsap, if the 35-year-old veteran gets squeezed out by the Nuggets going all-in with Jerami Grant’s free agency and the preference to develop Michal Porter Jr.