The Dallas Mavericks have traded a second-round pick to the Golden State Warriors in exchange for center Willie Cauley-Stein.
This news was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski and comes on the heels of the Mavericks losing Dwight Powell for the remainder of the season with a torn Achilles.
Dallas is sending Golden State a 2020 second-round pick (via Utah) for Cauley-Stein, league source tells ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 24, 2020
Cauley-Stein is below his career average in points and rebounds per game this season. However, he is shooting a higher percentage than he has in any season since his rookie season.
Most importantly for Dallas, this move will give them a defensive presence. Dallas is in the middle of a great season. A season where some thought they could maybe sneak in and be the eighth seed, but they are currently the fifth seed in the Western Conference. While they have been exceeding expectations, things on the defensive end have lacked at times.
The Mavericks currently sit at 17th in the league in defensive rating, which isn’t too bad when taken into account that they are first in offensive rating.
However, Powell was a valuable piece of the starting lineup because he did a lot of things that don’t show up in the stat sheet. He is dangerous on the pick and roll as a roller and while he wasn’t a great three-point shooter this season, he was at least enough of a threat to space the floor.
He was also the main guy on the Mavericks that would guard other centers. Now Cauley-Stein is not a threat to shoot the three at all, having only gone 4/18 in his career. But he can do a lot of those things that don’t show up in a box score, he’s a very strong defender and should help Dallas increase their defensive rating, and he is a big-time threat as a roller in the pick and roll, which could be very dangerous paired with Luka Doncic.
Top Photo: Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group