The Milwaukee Bucks are winding down their season in a race with several teams, but they’re not pushing for the final playoff spot; instead, they’re looking for last place and a chance to select a blue chip superstar with their high lottery pick. In addition to the initial prize the team will also own a high second-round pick and other second picks from previous trades. One player they will need to take a look at is Kentucky forward Willie Cauley-Stein.
Cauley-Stein is currently projected as a low lottery pick but could move up or slip depending on his tourney play. Most NBA teams can use a 7-foot shot blocker who shows toughness and a good feel for the game. Surprisingly, this is not a need for the Bucks. With Larry Sanders and John Henson already playing the roles of tall shot blockers, it would be redundant to spend a high pick when there are many other areas of need.
If Cauley-Stein drops and is available late first round or early second round, I see no reason not to grab him there. The Bucks could do worse than hoard 7-foot shot blockers. At the very least he would be an attractive trade piece to bundle with one of their bad contracts (see: O.J. Mayo).
Bottom Line: Cauley-Stein is a raw talent who will need time and lots of work on rebounding and consistency on the offensive side. Assuming no deal is made, Milwaukee is set with their frontcourt of Sanders and Henson, and Cauley-Stein doesn’t project any greater than these two. Actually, NBADraft.net compares him to Dan Gadzuric, a second-round selection by the Bucks in 2002.
David is a NBA writer for Rant Sports. Follow David S. Grant on Twitter @david_s_grant