NBA team exec: DeMarcus Cousins’ injuries ‘cost him $150 million’
DeMarcus Cousins’ past two seasons have been cut short due to serious injuries, and one NBA team executive speculated uncertainty over the star’s long-term health will cost him upwards of $150 million in free agency.
“It’s going to be an enormous loss for him,” a Western Conference executive told Bleacher Report. “He might end up in a situation where these injuries cost him $150 million. It’ll have a profound impact.”
Cousins suffered a tear in his left quadriceps muscle during the Golden State Warriors’ Game 2 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers last week, a setback that will almost certainly end his postseason.
Cousins of course suffered a torn Achilles tendon during his final season with the New Orleans Pelicans as well. The injury ultimately led Cousins to sign only a one-year, $5.3 million deal with the Warriors last summer that stunned the NBA. Cousins then finally made his 2018-19 season debut on Jan. 18.
The recurrence of an injury to Cousins’ left leg concerns Dr. Kingsley Yew, a physical therapist and founder of Evolve To Perform Physiotherapy, who cited a “synergistic pattern of wear” when speaking to Bleacher Report.
Expert medical assessments aside, not to mention the nature of Cousins’ injuries and whether his most recent one will require surgery, unsurprisingly has caused red flags to be raised among NBA teams, with Yew speculating that Cousins’ leg issues ought to “make any general manager nervous.”
Another Western Conference executive argues that Cousins’ performance this season, while encouraging, did not move the needle enough for a team to offer the superstar the max contract he desires in free agency before the injury.
Cousins may have to begrudgingly sign another “prove it” deal this coming offseason instead of a a multi-year deal, one that could possibly reach $10 million.
The Warriors, meanwhile, could sign Cousins to a $6.4 million deal for next season, which would amount to a 20% raise, as the team does not have his Bird rights. Cousins arguably could end up elsewhere as well.
“He’ll be the Lakers’ or the Knicks’ consolation prize,” one of the Western Conference execs said of Cousins.