Warriors' Willie Cauley-Stein knew Chiefs would make Super Bowl LIV

Warriors' Willie Cauley-Stein knew Chiefs would make Super Bowl LIV

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Willie Cauley-Stein was in a confident mood Monday afternoon. 

Fewer than 24 hours after his Kansas City Chiefs clinched their third Super Bowl appearance in franchise history, setting up a date with the 49ers in Super Bowl LIV in Miami on Feb. 2, Cauley-Stein said he never doubted the Chiefs' path out of the AFC.

"I already knew they were going," Cauley-Stein told NBC Sports Bay Area. "As soon as the [New England] Patriots were out we were good. We were great." 

Cauley-Stein's fandom can be traced to his childhood. A native of Spearville, Kansas -- more than 300 miles away from Arrowhead Stadium -- he loved the Chiefs from an early age. But it would be his scholastic struggles that brought him closer to the franchise.

As a prep prospect in Spearville, his grades dwindled, putting a potential college career in peril. In an effort to improve his grades, the 7-footer was sent 300 miles to live with AAU teammate Shavon Shields, son of then-Chiefs offensive lineman Will Shields. Cauley-Stein transferred to Olathe Northwest High School in a Kansas City suburb. Cauley-Stein's grades began to improve under the elder Shields' tutelage, helping him become eligible for a scholarship to Kentucky. 

"He was really like a straightforward, smart, really intelligent dude," Cauley-Stein said. "I see how he was living and how much he was saving. I think that was the biggest thing about him. How intelligent he was about is money." 

The current iteration of Cauley-Stein's football team has become an offensive juggernaut. During a 12-4 regular season, the Chiefs ranked sixth in total offense (379.2 yards per game) and fifth in passing offense (281.2 yards). 

The biggest reason is quarterback Patrick Mahones, whom observers have compared to Cauley-Stein's current teammate Stephen Curry for their shared propensity for solo offensive displays. In a 51-31 win over the Houston Texans two weeks ago, the Chiefs erased a 24-0 deficit, out-scoring the Texans 28-3 in the second quarter. 

When broached with the cross-sport comparison between MVPs, Curry and Cauley-Stein each had a unique response.

"'Cause we're both light-skinned?" Curry jokingly asked. 

"If you want to break it down football to basketball," Cauley-Stein followed up, "they're pretty similar."

"The beauty is in the eye of the beholder," Curry added.

[RELATED: Steph reportedly targeting March 1 return to Dubs' lineup]

The Warriors are slated to be in a Washington, D.C. hotel during the NFL's finale. Cauley-Stein believes the Chiefs can win their first Super Bowl in half a century.

"If we come in ready," he said. "The only way I feel like San Francisco can beat us is if we don't come in ready to play -- if we come in there cooling. It's going to be a good game. It's definitely going to be who has the better gameplan."

Warriors’ NBA draft lottery picks since 1990, ranked from worst to best

Warriors’ NBA draft lottery picks since 1990, ranked from worst to best

It's been a while since the Warriors had an NBA draft pick in the lottery.

But due to Kevin Durant's departure and injuries to Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, the Warriors own the worst record in the NBA and will have one of the top picks in the 2020 draft.

Before general manager Bob Myers and the Warriors' front office add a top talent to the roster, let's look back at all the lottery picks the franchise has made since 1990.

From Tyrone Hill in 1990 to Harrison Barnes in 2012, here are the Warriors' last 17 lottery picks ranked from worst to best.


Trae Young says he'll catch Steph Curry as NBA's best shooter in 1 year

Trae Young says he'll catch Steph Curry as NBA's best shooter in 1 year

In light of the coronavirus outbreak putting all American sports on an indefinite pause, hot takes have become the topic du jour for fans relegated to their homes.

While joining “The Big Podcast with Shaq,” Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young was pressed on the many comparisons the young point guard draws to Warriors star Steph Curry.

On the subject of taking over Curry’s title as the NBA’s most feared shooter, Young doesn’t think it will be long before he overtakes Steph.

[RELATED: Watch Steph make someone's day by joining their IG Live]

It’s hard to take any stock in this statement given how much Shaq pressed the 21-year-old to answer.

But Young’s talent is unmistakable, and there’s a chance we’ll see Young resetting the record books one day the way Curry has throughout his 11 years in the NBA.

A year though? I’d imagine Curry and his teammates would disagree with that timeline.