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Saturday, July 11, 2020

Willie Cauley-Stein wants out of Sacramento

After four seasons together, Willie Cauley-Stein and the Sacramento Kings appear to be headed for divorce court.

Cauley-Stein’s agent Roger Montgomery of Roc Nation Sports said on Saturday that the big man wants out of Sacramento.

“I really think Willie needs a fresh start,” said Montgomery, according to Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee. “Based on how things have gone for him there in Sacramento, I just think it’s time for Willie to move on and we’d really like him to move on.

“We’ve kind of hoped things would change over the years and Willie would get a chance to expand his game, get a chance for some consistency there in terms of the roster turnover and the coaching turnover and the things that have not been steady there,” he added. “That being said, I’m hopeful they will not even give Willie his qualifying offer so Willie can be an unrestricted free agent.”

Cauley-Stein, 25, averaged 11.9 points and 8.4 rebounds a game for the Kings last season. When the team drafted him No. 6 overall back in 2015, he had high expectations as an athletic rim runner on offense and a multipositional padlock on defense. But Cauley-Stein’s stock has cratered in recent years due to effort concerns and a general lack of improvement as a player.

The former Kentucky star is due for restricted free agency this summer, but as Montgomery hinted at, can become unrestricted if the Kings do not extend a qualifying offer. The team has other pressing offseason matters to attend to, and a split between the two sides would free up minutes in the frontcourt for the likes of Marvin Bagley and Harry Giles while also giving Cauley-Stein the opportunity to seek a bigger role elsewhere.

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