Key Mavericks player opts out of season, team signs veteran guard

By Vincent Frank
Mar 11, 2020; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Mavericks center Willie Cauley-Stein (33) reacts after dunking against the Denver Nuggets during the second quarter at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks will head into Orlando’s bubble city late next month boasting a 40-27 record and locked in to one of the top-seven seeds in the Western Conference.

Like a few other squads, Dallas will also be without a key contributor as the season attempts to resume amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Dallas Mavericks center Willie Cauley-Stein has opted out of the remainder of the season

Acquired from the Golden State Warriors ahead of February’s trade deadline, the former lottery pick is focusing more on his growing family than what could still end up being an ill-fated season.

It’s hard to blame Cauley-Stein for this decision. There’s absolutely no reason to put his newborn child in harm’s way.

The 26-year-old big man finishes the 2019-20 season averaging 7.2 points and 5.8 rebounds 58% shooting from the field. In a related move, the Mavericks replaced WCS on their active roster.

Dallas Mavericks sign Trey Burke for the remainder of the NBA season

Yet another former lottery pick, Burke averaged 5.9 points on 47% shooting for the Philadelphia 76ers in 25 games earlier this season.

He was made expendable when Philadelphia added Glenn Robinson III and Alec Burks in a trade with the above-mentioned Warriors ahead of the deadline.

Burke’s best season came back in 2017-18 with the New York Knicks when he averaged 12.8 points and 4.7 assists on a resounding 50% shooting from the field.

Multiple NBA players have opted out of resuming the season

Each player has his own reason for opting out. Portland Trail Blazers forward Trevor Ariza is in the middle of a custody battle. Los Angeles Lakers guard Avery Bradley has a young kid with preexisting conditions. Those are the two headliners.

Given the growing number of COVID-19 cases in the United States, it’s not a surprise that multiple players have decided resuming the season at Walt Disney World in Orlando makes no real sense.