Mavericks: Can Willie Cauley-Stein and Kristaps Porzingis co-exist?

Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images) /
3 of 4
Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /


The issues with the two big men sharing the court comes on the defensive end of the floor. Willie Cauley-Stein again operates best in a traditional center role. He looks to protect the rim and struggles defending on the perimeter. Cauley-Stein averages 1.2 blocks and 1.1 steals per game this season.

Kristaps Porzingis is the Mavericks primary rim protector, though. He is swatting 2.0 shots per game and grabbing 8.9 rebounds. KP is not a standout perimeter defender either.

Why the Mavs should acquire Danilo Gallinari. Read

The Mavs can pass off the two playing together if the opposition features two paint oriented big men, but what team employs that lineup in today’s NBA? If the two share the court, Coach Carlisle likely asks Porzingis to check the opposition’s four. Depending on the matchup that could end poorly.

The Mavericks also may be able to use it in short bursts against teams with a limited offensive option on the floor. The type of player who spots up in the corner and doesn’t move. Dallas could send Cauley-Stein out to check him and let Porzingis operate in the paint.

It will be interesting to see if Carlisle experiments with the two on the floor together in the coming games just to see the results.

Next: Other factors