When the NBA attempts to restart its season next month in Orlando, former Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins is not expected to be on an active roster.
Despite interest from numerous teams contending for a title, Cousins will reportedly sit out and continue to rehab for a full return in 2020-21.
Shams Charania of The Athletic was the first to break the news.
Sources: Multiple teams have expressed interest in DeMarcus Cousins but have been told the four-time All-Star will sit out the resumed season and continue rehab for full return in 2020-21.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 23, 2020
Earlier this month, both ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus acknowledged the possibility of Cousins returning to the floor when the NBA resumes the 2019-20 at Walt Disney World in Orlando starting July 30. In fact, the early rumblings were that the Los Angeles Lakers, who waived the former Kentucky star back in February, were interested in bringing Cousins back for a title run.
While the Lakers were seen as the early favorite, Cousins’ former Kentucky teammate, John Wall, told The Undefeated’s Marc Spears that he’s been pushing the Washington Wizards to sign the 6-foot-11 center out of Mobile, Alabama.
“Oh man, you know I’m trying to push for that,” Wall said in the interview. “I’ve been on that for like five years. I want to sign him right now.”
Cousins has been battling significant injuries the past few years, most recently a torn ACL in his left knee in August 2019.
While Wall has made it clear he’d welcome his former teammate in Washington if he’s ready to play, he also wants Cousins to focus on his health first and foremost so he can “get back to the Boogie that he was.”
“He’s healthy. I don’t know if he’ll play right now, but I know he’s healthy,” Wall said of Cousins. “The main thing I told him when he went through his last thing — when he tore his ACL I went straight down there and spent time with him. I said, ‘Bro, I understand that you’re trying to get back and play’ — you know, when you don’t have a contract, you want to get back and go play — but I’m like, ‘Bro, be smart, take your time to get all the way healthy so you can show these people what you’re really about.’ That window has been shortened when you come back from an injury, how the new NBA is, people will move on. I want him to focus on that and get back to the Boogie that he was.”
It appears Cousins will be taking Wall’s advice, sitting out the remainder of the 2019-20 season in hopes of a dominant return to the floor in 2020-21.