3. Willie Cauley-Stein
There are quite a few other options that are available to work out for the Los Angeles Lakers that might seem better on paper. However, those options are either much older or are smaller and that defeats the entire purpose.
Los Angeles needs someone with true size that can log center minutes if needed down the stretch. They already have an undersized five option in Wenyen Gabriel that they can throw out there. Signing someone without any size defeats the entire purpose.
That being said, the attention then turns to seven-footer Willie Cauley-Stein. Like the others on this list, Cauley-Stein’s numbers are not the most impressive if you are looking at his Basketball Reference page. However, he would still add the barebones size that the team needs.
Cauley-Stein is not as old as some of the other candidates as he is 29 years old. He has also proved that he can play a bigger role in a rotation, averaging 17.3 minutes per game as recently as the 2020-21 season with the Dallas Mavericks.
Today’s game has passed centers like Willie Cauley-Stein by as teams no longer need the rim-protecting, rebounding bigs that do not have much more depth to their game. But the Lakers are in a position to add depth in that regard and could gamble on the former sixth-overall pick.