Oct 10, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu (8) combines with forward Ed Davis (17) to block the shot by Sacramento Kings center Willie Cauley-Stein (00) during the second quarter at Sleep Train Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Willie Cauley-Stein Deserves More Minutes
I get that Coach Karl wants to ease Willie Cauley-Stein into the NBA game. That’s fantastic. Considering our abysmal five year stretch, it doesn’t hurt to bring along a rookie slowly, thereby eliminating any development of bad habits (i.e. Tyreke Evans, and to a certain extent, DeMarcus Cousins).
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That said, I would’ve liked to see him out on the floor more last night. Cauley-Stein possesses the lateral speed and athleticism to guard guys like Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan night-in and night-out. I don’t think we can expect that out of Kosta Koufos.
In just under eight minutes of play, Cauley-Stein looked composed on defense, which is precisely why the Kings drafted him. That didn’t stop Bill Simmons from mocking the Kings’ pick on his Western Conference Preview earlier this week. Truth be told, Simmons is right.
Perhaps rookies like Emmanuel Mudiay will have more long term star potential than Cauley-Stein, but that shouldn’t be of any concern. The franchise is in “win now” mode, and WCS fits the mold. You can expect defense, hustle plays, and a drama-less attitude from the rook.
Next: Kosta Koufos Is Solid As A Rock