This afternoon, the Philadelphia 76ers and center Willie Cauley-Stein reportedly agreed to a 10-day contract. (via John Clark of NBC Sports)
Source tells me Sixers will be signing free agent 7 foot center— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) February 22, 2022
Willie Cauley Stein on 10 day contract
He played 18 games with the Mavericks this season and was waived January 15 pic.twitter.com/7yqy16d3nY
Cauley-Stein’s Stint with Dallas
In the last two seasons of his career, Cauley-Stein was a member of the Dallas Mavericks. Specifically, he served as a backup to big-man Dwight Powell most of the time. Dating back to the 2019-2020 season, Cauley-Stein was shipped to the Golden State Warriors in exchange for draft capital. Fortunately for the center, he found a home in Dallas, or so he thought. In the 2020 off-season, he inked a two-year deal worth $8.2 million with the Mavericks. Last season, the veteran averaged respectable numbers of 5.3 points per game and 4.5 rebounds per game, on 63.2 field-goal percentage.
However, this season Cauley-Stein was much less productive with a decreased role. The big man went from getting 17.1 minutes last year to only 9.8 minutes this season. In those minutes, he averaged an underwhelming 1.9 points per game and 2.1 rebounds per game, on 45.7 field-goal percentage. As a result, the Dallas Mavericks waived Cauley-Stein back on January 15th of this year.
What Cauley-Stein Can Bring to Philly
It didn’t take very long for the veteran center to find a new landing spot as he’s now reportedly a Philadelphia 76er. The acquisition of Cauley-Stein isn’t too significant in the grand scheme of things. However, he does provide much-desired front-court depth and an experienced presence in the locker room. On the hardwood, Cauley-Stein provides the typical two-way impact as most centers do. Microscopically, he can rebound well, which is something the 76ers desperately need as they’re ranked dead-last in rebounds per game. Also, Cauley-Stein is a solid rim protector and a lob threat offensively. Him being a threat in the painted area could hint towards some James Harden pick-and-roll action. All in all, this wasn’t a sexy acquisition for the Sixers, but it filled their need in the front-court. With Paul Millsap, Paul Reed, Charles Bassey, and now Willie Cauley-Stein in the mix, time will tell who coach Doc Rivers trusts to back up Joel Embiid.