by Alex Poletti
Despite a lengthy injury history that has limited DeMarcus Cousins to less than 55 games in each of the last four seasons, the basketball world was somehow still surprised by an injury to the Lakers center during preseason workouts.
“We just didn’t see this coming,” Lakers GM and second runner-up in a local Rob Lowe look-alike contest Rob Pelinka says. “How could a notoriously fragile player who has been unable to stay healthy each of his last four campaigns tear an ACL? It’s beyond us.”
After signing a one-year contract with the Lakers following a brief stint in the Bay Area, Boogie suffered the knee injury while working out in Las Vegas. The 29-year-old says this unexpected tear is heartbreaking, not only to him but to the Lakers organization.
“This is a real tragedy for me,” the four-time All-Star says. “I thought I would make $3.5 million by helping the Lakers reach the Finals. I guess instead I’ll have to earn that money by sitting around watching TV and drinking beer. This injury was unexpected. An injury to my Achilles? Sure. To my quadricep? Absolutely. But my ACL? That’s just unheard of.”
Luckily, the Lakers won’t be without a center to begin the season, thanks to their re-signing of veteran big man Javale McGee. LA is also aided by the league’s new contract caveat, where for an additional million, a team can get DeMarcus Cousins insurance when they sign the former first-rounder.
“Of course we all thought Boogie would be healthy this season, we wouldn’t have signed him otherwise,” Pelinka continues. “But we are grateful for the cash back guarantee we get from this injury.”
Not all hope is lost for Cousins, but a return this season looks grim. The average recovery time for an ACL tear is six months, but given Boogie’s size, the Kentucky alum could be out much longer. Experts expect Cousins to be ready by the end of the regular season or the start of the playoffs. No one is more ready for that than the big man himself.
“I’m ready for the playoffs,” the 2010 All-American says. “I’ll be training and getting back into shape while LeBron and AD do their thing. When I get back into the clubhouse, this team is going to be legit. It’ll be scary what I can do. Who knows what I’ll tear next come June?”