The Warriors have started to make moves, and Willie Cauley-Stein is the first to go.
Golden State officially traded the center to the Dallas Mavericks for a 2020 second-round draft pick Saturday morning.
Warriors trade Willie Cauley-Stein to Dallas pic.twitter.com/NQtfmVkngZ— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) January 25, 2020
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski first reported the trade Friday afternoon.
The trade of Cauley-Stein gives the Warriors salary cap space and roster flexibility, and the ability to convert one of their two-way players, Ky Bowman or Marquese Chriss, to a guaranteed contract.
Golden State will now drop $2.57M below the hard cap. The trade will also save the Warriors $5.66M toward the luxury tax. The team now has a $9.3M tax bill and $3.7M above the threshold. The Warriors also have 2 open roster spots.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) January 24, 2020
Before the trade was official Friday, Cauley-Stein took to Twitter to thank Warriors fans and used the Mavericks' hashtag.
D'Angelo Russell posted a photo on his Instagram Stories, shouting out Cauley-Stein.
Trade isn't official yet, but D-Lo shouts out Willie on his IG stories. pic.twitter.com/OjfyicmCXc— Ali Thanawalla (@Ali_Thanawalla) January 25, 2020
With the Warriors out of the playoff race, it makes sense for them to trade some of their players for future assets. Cauley-Stein likely is just the first to go. Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III are two other Warriors players that could be dealt before the Feb. 6 NBA trade deadline.
Cauley-Stein signed a two-year, $4.46 million contract with the Warriors last offseason. The second year of the deal is a player option, so he could stick around in Dallas next season.
Dallas was in need of a center after their starter, Dwight Powell, ruptured his Achilles tendon earlier this week.
In 41 games with the Warriors, Cauley-Stein averaged 7.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.2 blocks.
Now that Cauley-Stein is out of the picture, expect Chriss and Omari Spellman to receive the majority of minutes at center. Draymond Green could also slide over and pick up some minutes at the position.