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DeMarcus Cousins could be healthy for NBA Playoffs

This is a development to keep a close eye on.

Los Angeles Lakers v Golden State Warriors Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Former Wildcats legend and All-Star big man DeMarcus Cousins signed with the Los Angeles Lakers this past offseason after a discouraging one-year stint with the Golden State Warriors.

Cousins was one of the game’s iconic bigs before tearing his Achilles with the Pelicans after years of dominance in Sacramento. He’s then rehabbed back to almost full strength, got on the court and tore his quad.

After tearing his ACL in August, the third major lower body injury he’s sustained in the past few seasons, Cousins was projected to miss the entire season.

In a turn of events, it appears he’s on track to return sometime in the postseason, which could range from late April to early June. But, the timeframe is still extremely cloudy for any return.

Lakers head coach Frank Vogel confirmed the news at NBA All-Star Weekend.

“He’s on track to get healthy by the playoffs, and we’ll have to see where he’s at with rhythm, and conditioning, and timing and all that stuff. But there is a possibility he returns this season, yes.”

It’s exciting to hear, but even with Cousins back, the Lakers have Dwight Howard and JaVale McGee, so it’s unknown how much time Cousins would get. After his last rehab, Cousins was a clear liability defensively with the Warriors.

That also puts a bummer on what one of the most dominant stars to a career the NBA has ever seen. At his peak, Cousins was an all-around monster, averaging 25.2 points, 12.0 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 blocks per game.

That said, he could return, but there’s virtually zero expectations that he’ll be a highly-used contributor for the currently top-ranked Lakers.

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