OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr has a list he needs to check off before injured center DeMarcus Cousins can return to the lineup for the NBA Finals.
Cousins suffered a left quadriceps tear with 8:09 left in the first quarter of Game 2 of the opening round playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers.READ MORE: Santa Rosa Neighbors Blame City After Creek Overflows, Flooding Homes, Forcing Evacuations
He has worked hard to return to the lineup and began to play in full scrimmages last week. Kerr says his return is still questionable for Thursday’s Game One, but he did travel with the team to Toronto on Thursday.
“There are all kinds of factors (that need to be considered before Cousins returns),” Kerr told reporters. “How’s his conditioning? What do the matchups look like and what are we trying to accomplish. We’ll continue to assess all that over the coming days. ”
On the positive side, Cousins no longer has pain in his leg and the strength has returned to the injured quad. Still the Warriors coach admits it’s a lot to ask of Cousins to immediately be ready for the intensity of a NBA Finals.
“That’s what he’s dealing with,” Kerr said. “We are trying to help him along through the process. We’ll see where it all goes.”READ MORE: Los Gatos Mayor Issues Warning To Residents To Stop Harassment At Council Meetings
When asked about possible minute restrictions, Kerr admitted he was yet to speak with team medical director Rick Celebrini about the conditions surrounding Cousins return.
“We’ll get there,” he said of the discussion. “We still have a few days until the first game.”
With Kevin Durant sidelined with an injured calf, the Warriors could use the boost a return by Cousins would give them. He returned from a torn Achilles mid-way through the regular season and averaged 16.3 points and 8.32 rebounds in the 30 games he appeared in.
For his part, Cousins told reporters he was taking it a day at a time.
“We are going to take it a day at time, see where my body takes me,” he said. “I feel good. I’m at lot better than I was and I’m in a better place. I’m able to get up and down the court more.”MORE NEWS: Lowell High School Alumni File Lawsuit To Reinstate Merit-Based Admissions
“If I get the opportunity to play, I’m going to take full advantage of it, leave it all on floor and see what happens,” he added.