Per The Athletic and Stadium’s NBA writer Shams Charania, the Houston Rockets today signed free agent veteran center Willie Cauley-Stein.
Free agent center Willie Cauley-Stein has agreed to a one-year deal with the Houston Rockets, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Cauley-Stein will compete for a roster spot in training camp.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 12, 2022
The 29-year-old Cauley-Stein has played for four franchises over seven seasons. Most recently, he played two games for the Philadelphia 76ers in February of last season while on a 10-day contract. His career averages are 8.7 points and 5.9 rebounds per game, but that’s skewed by his early career in Sacramento when he was averaging well over 20 minutes per game. His other stops were with the Golden State Warriors and Dallas Mavericks.
For the Rockets, Cauley-Stein has been brought in to compete for a roster spot during training camp. Houston is thin up front, and that has been a glaring weakness on this team for a couple of years now. Alperen Sengun slots in as the starter. Beyond that, Houston has Boban Marjanovic and Bruno Fernando as backup options off the bench, which clearly hasn’t inspired much confidence. WCS is knows for his defense, which should help his chance to catch on with Houston.
The signing takes the Rockets to 21 players, which means they will need to release or trade someone before the Cauley-Stein signing can be completed. All of the players acquired in the Christian Wood trade are viable candidates, as are a couple of others. It will be interesting to see how Rafael Stone continues to shape the roster, especially with trade rumors swirling around K.J. Martin.
Do you think Cauley-Stein will stick with the Rockets? Or is this just a signing that will ultimately lead nowhere? Let us know in the comments.