In extremely unfortunate news, Lakers big man DeMarcus Cousins suffered yet another injury setback. After ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski broke news that Cousins was being further evaluated for a knee injury, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that Cousins indeed had suffered a torn ACL and would be out for another extended period of time.
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WATCH: DeMarcus Cousins Tears ACL in Men’s Rec League Game
(Warning: Video Contains Graphic Content)
Cousins can be seen driving to the basket in the courtside video before looking to briefly collide with one of the opposing defenders. While there wasn’t any significant contact between the two, Cousins yelped loudly before crashing to the ground underneath the hoop. While there may have been some minor contact involved – a possible knee bump was reported – it seems that Cousins was simply the victim of some more bad luck.
Cousins had previously been balling out in his rec league games this summer, posting massive point, rebound, and assist numbers. Looking to be in the best shape of his life, Cousins was using the games to help play himself back into season form and get some more live-action before kicking off training camp. Fighting an uphill battle to return to form after his Achilles’ injury, Cousins finally had a full offseason at his disposal to get his body ready to play in peak form. Unfortunately, Cousins now looks to be on the shelf for the foreseeable future and seems likely to miss the entirety of this coming season.
What Comes Next for the Los Angeles Lakers
With Cousins now on the shelf for the foreseeable future, the Lakers will likely look to pick up another center on the free agent market. With only JaVale McGee under contract as a true center, the Lakers could lean on Anthony Davis to play more center – though they would likely prefer to hold off on doing so until the playoffs in order to keep Davis fresh. While Davis is still an elite center, he isn’t as big as some of the league’s other behemoths and over the course of an 82 game season can get fairly banged up.
Still available are names like Kenneth Faried and Nene Hilario, both former Rockets who have a similar style of high-energy play that would seemingly be a strong fit on the Lakers. Faried is the younger and more athletic of the two but either could adequately fill the role of 10-15 minutes a game of competent basketball off the bench.
Dwight Howard is another name that Twitter has taken a liking to – though the chance of a reunion between Howard and the Lakers seems unlikely. Howard is still under contract, yet seems to be a prime buyout target and should be available for cheap. There isn’t much of a market for Howard’s services these days and while he has injury concerns of his own, would easily be the most talented option available to the Lakers.