Warriors coach Steve Kerr says no minutes restriction for DeMarcus Cousins, but he’ll play in short bursts
DeMarcus Cousins’ debut with the Golden State Warriors will come with no minutes restrictions, according to head coach Steve Kerr. The big man will play in short bursts, though, as the coaching staff watches him closely, per ClutchPoints’ Tomer Azarly.
The Warriors were expected to play Cousins under a minutes restriction, but it looks like instead they are choosing to deploy him in small stints against the LA Clippers, hoping he can retain his wind after his first show of NBA action in nearly a year.
Cousins first suffered his season-ending Achilles tear on Jan. 27 — making this return only nine days from the one-year anniversary of his injury — a long time being away from the frenetic NBA pace.
As expected, it’s unlikely Cousins will reach the 30-minute mark, unless there is an overtime situation at Staples Center.
There will be no hard limit on Cousins’ minutes, but his stints on the court are likely to grow as the training staff feels adequate, judging on his comfort level and ability to keep pace with Golden State’s breakneck tempo.
Kerr noted the Warriors won’t slow down their pace of play just because Cousins is returning to the lineup, likely a reason why he’s deploying him in short bursts, rather than setting a minute allotment:
“We’re not going to slow things down,” said Kerr after Friday’s shootaround.
Steve Kerr on the team’s pace with DeMarcus: “We’re not going to slow things down.” pic.twitter.com/WO0TixXJ6G
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) January 18, 2019
Cousins is unlikely to play much like he did with the Sacramento Kings or the New Orleans Pelicans, but rather a more modern style where he plays higher on the block or into the elbow heading out into the perimeter.
Surely this will be an interesting experiment to see against a team battling to remain in the playoff picture.