Golden State Warriors: Kevon Looney to start in Cauley-Stein’s absence

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 13: Kevon Looney #5 of the Golden State Warriors dunks the ball against the Toronto Raptors during Game Six of the 2019 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 13, 2019 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kyle Terada-Pool/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 13: Kevon Looney #5 of the Golden State Warriors dunks the ball against the Toronto Raptors during Game Six of the 2019 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 13, 2019 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kyle Terada-Pool/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

Golden State Warriors’ center Willie Cauley-Stein will be out until at least the regular season. In his place, Kevon Looney will start.

One of the thinnest positions for the Golden State Warriors this upcoming season will be at center, and it appears they already be not at full strength. Willie-Cauley Stein has been ruled out of training camp and will likely be out until the regular season.

The team’s first preseason outing will October 5, but they won’t actually take the court in a meaningful game until late October with their home-opener slated for the 24th.

Given what’s recently happened with the Warriors’ medical staff, they will likely take all the precautions necessary to make sure Cauley-Stein is fully healed prior to playing. After all, with Klay Thompson out till at least February, they’ll need all the depth they can get.

In his absence, Kevon Looney, who started when Damian Jones and DeMarcus Cousins were out last season, will fill in.

Looney is the only player on the Warriors roster making over $3 million per year yet not on a max contract. He was re-signed this offseason to a three-year, $15 million deal, a contract many considered a win for the Dubs.

It’s still unknown if Cauley-Stein will actually miss time though. SF Gate’s Grant Marek noted that general manager Bob Myers gave a loose timeframe on when the center will be re-evaluated.

"“He’s going to miss camp, we’ll probably look at him again and give you an update at the end of October, about 30 days from now,” Myers said."

This isn’t promising. If it is indeed 30 days, Cauley-Stein, who signed a one-year deal after spending the last four seasons in Sacramento, will miss at least the first week of the regular season.

Sadly, the Warriors need the help with Looney, the team’s only other true center, behind Cauley-Stein. Even Looney didn’t start his career at the five but eventually transitioned to the position. The Warriors are a team laced with power forwards and will likely go small with the 7-footer out.

Next. Top 25 Golden State Warriors in franchise history. dark

Looney averaged 6.5 points on 60% shooting, 6.6 rebounds, and 2.3 assists during his 24 games as a starter last season.