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Warriors’ DeMarcus Cousins Is Out ‘Indefinitely’ With Torn Quad

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The Golden State Warriors did more than just fall victim to the biggest comeback in N.B.A. playoff history on Monday night. They also lost DeMarcus Cousins, their starting center, for the foreseeable future — and most likely for the rest of the postseason — after tests revealed that he had torn a left quadriceps muscle in the first quarter of the Warriors’ 135-131 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 2 of their first-round playoff series.

Cousins, who had returned this season after tearing his left Achilles’ tendon in January 2018, underwent a magnetic resonance imaging examination on Tuesday that revealed the tear, the Warriors announced. The team said Cousins would be out “indefinitely” and begin a course of rehabilitation.

No specific timetable was offered for his return.

Cousins, 28, sustained the injury when he tumbled to the court going for a loose ball early in Monday’s game. He immediately grabbed his left thigh, then limped to the locker room and did not return. The Warriors knew it was grim. After the game, Coach Steve Kerr said that Cousins had sustained a “significant” injury and indicated that he would be out for a while.

“It’s tough, for sure,” the Warriors’ Stephen Curry said late Monday night. “You feel for him considering all he’s been through this last year. This is a big stage, the playoffs, and he’s been looking forward to this.”

It was another devastating blow for Cousins, a four-time N.B.A. All-Star whose career has unraveled because of injuries. Last season, he was in line for a massive new contract when he tore his Achilles’ tendon while playing for the New Orleans Pelicans. Without lucrative options in free agency last summer, he agreed to a modest one-year deal with the Warriors worth $5.3 million.

After spending the first half of the season rehabbing, Cousins returned to the court in January — after missing almost exactly 12 months — and gave the Warriors additional depth in their pursuit of a third straight championship. He had been playing well, too, averaging 16.3 points and 8.2 rebounds a game in 30 regular-season appearances.

Cousins showed flashes of his old brilliance. On April 2, in a late-season victory against the Denver Nuggets, he had 28 points and 13 rebounds while shooting 12 of 17 from the field.

Even after Cousins had departed for the locker room on Monday, the Warriors managed to build a 31-point lead against the Clippers — but then blew it, succumbing to the off-the-bench heroics of Lou Williams (36 points, 11 assists) and Montrezl Harrell (25 points, 10 rebounds), who helped Los Angeles even the best-of-seven series at a game apiece. Game 3 is Thursday night at Staples Center.

Cousins will be a free agent again this summer.


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