The Pelicans' season has come to pass and while they put up an amazing effort, it's hard not to wonder where we would be if "Boogie" was healthy. If you keep up with the Pelicans you probably know that one of our all-start centers, Demarcus "Boogie" Cousins had a season ending injury against the Houston Rockets on January 27, rupturing his left achilles tendon. While this was a devastating injury, the team was resilient and earned their way into the Western Conference playoffs. The Pels made swift work against the Portland Trail Blazers but couldn't pull it off against the defending NBA Finalists - Golden State.
If we still had our all-start center, maybe things would have ended differently and we would have been on our way to a series against the Rockets, but who knows? We can only cross our fingers and hope for another chance to have "Boogie" and "The Brow" back together for another season!
ABOUT THE INJURY
The achilles tendon is a thick cord-like tissue that connects the calf (gastroc, soleus and plantaris) to the foot. When the calf contracts, the achilles tendon pulls on the foot in a way that makes your toe point. Achilles ruptures often happen when landing from a jump, which is exactly what caused the season ending injury for Cousins. While attempting to rebound his own free throw, he landed awkwardly on his left foot, forcing it into a flexed position and ultimately rupturing the tendon. Check out the actual video footage on the link below.
It's not a gruesome injury, but the rehab after surgery is definitely grilling! Let's take a look at the breakdown of where "Boogie" should be in his recovery. We'd like to start by saying that Tandem PT was not associated with his rehabilitation and the following timeline is an estimate based on common achilles tendon repair protocols and is not by any means and direct representation of his progress.
January 27: Achilles rupture occurs
January 31: Cousins has surgery to repair achilles tendon. He would have been non-weight bearing for 2 weeks while casted.
February 21: Cousins begins PT. PT goals are to improve ankle range of motion, start light strengthening and stretching and start partial weight-bearing with a heel lift.
March 14: Cousins graduates from crutches and starts more intensive rehab. Over the next 10 weeks Cousins will be weaning from his walking boot, working to strengthen the entire left leg, initiating balance training, increasing ankle resisted exercises, beginning to lightly stretch the achilles tendon and resuming full weight bearing.
***May 9: Now 14 weeks post-op, Cousins is about half way through his formal rehab. His focus is on regaining full strength of the left leg, regaining balance, gradually improving flexibility and enhancing his gait to prepare for the next phase of rehab which will include jogging, light agility drills and possibly hopping.
"Boogie" will stay busy with rehab for at least another 3 months. Following his formal discharge from physical therapy, he will likely work with other specialties to regain his conditioning and sports performance to get him back onto the court for his #resurgence!