Willie Cauley-Stein

#00 C / Sacramento Kings / EXP: 2YRS Height: 7-0 Weight: 240 lb Age: 24 College: Kentucky

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  • Cauley-Stein (back) played 30 minutes off the bench in his return Tuesday against the Suns, posting 13 points (5-12 FG, 3-7 FT), six rebounds and two assists. Cauley-Stein had missed the previous three games with a lower back strain, but was given a probable designation going into Tuesday and took the court as expected. While he played off the bench, Cauley-Stein logged a full 30 minutes, which was essentially a starter's workload. Look for him to make a return to the starting lineup in short order and that could come as soon as Thursday's tilt with the Timberwolves.

  • Cauley-Stein (back) has been upgraded to probable for Tuesday's game against the Suns, Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee reports. Cauley-Stein has been sidelined for three consecutive games with a lower back strain, but should return to the lineup ahead of Tuesday's matchup. If all goes as planned Cauley-Stein will likely take back his role as the team's starting center, which sends Zach Randolph back to power forward and Skal Labissiere back to the bench. With Cauley-Stein expected back, Labissiere and JaKarr Sampson should both see less minutes in the frontcourt.

  • Cauley-Stein (back) took part in practice Monday and will be a game-time call for Tuesday's matchup with the Suns, James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Cauley-Stein has missed the last three games with a lower back strain, though his participation in Monday's practice bodes well for a return on Tuesday. Look for Cauley-Stein to test out the back during morning shootaround and pregame warmups before a decision is made on his availability, so we may not get official word until just prior to tip-off. If Cauley-Stein is cleared, Zach Randolph would likely shift back to power forward, with the likes of Skal Labissiere and JaKarr Sampson losing some minutes in the frontcourt.

  • Cauley-Stein (back) has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Raptors, James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Cauley-Stein continues to work his way back from a lower back strain and is now set to miss a third straight game. His next opportunity to take the court will be Tuesday against the Suns, though his availability for practice Monday should be a good indicator for whether or not he'll ultimately be able to play. With Cauley-Stein out the last two games, the Kings have shifted Zach Randolph to center and promoted JaKarr Sampson to the top unit at power forward, which will likely be the case once again on Sunday.

  • Cauley-Stein (back) will not travel with the team for its upcoming two-game road trip, Kings sideline reporter Kayte Christensen reports. Cauley-Stein strained his lower-back Saturday in Milwaukee, and he'll be held out to rest the injury while the Kings travel to Cleveland on Wednesday and New Orleans on Friday. That means his next opportunity to play will come Sunday, when Sacramento returns home to host Toronto. In the meantime, expect Kosta Koufos and Skal Labissiere to pick up increased minutes at center, although the Kings did opt to go with a smaller lineup against Milwaukee after Cauley-Stein exited the game.

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