Willie Cauley-Stein Was Best Kings Player in 2018-19, Catch-all Stat Says

If you asked most Sacramento Kings fans who the best players on the team was during the 2018-19 season, most would pick point guard De'Aaron Fox or shooting guard Buddy Hield.

Center Willie Cauley-Stein would not be high on the list.

But according to a "catch-all metric" created by Bleacher Report, the pending restricted free agent was the best Kings player this past season.

How is that possible you ask? B/R took "ESPN's real plus-minus, Basketball Reference's box plus-minus* and Jacob Goldstein's player impact plus-minus" and averaged them out in order to find the best player on each team in the NBA.

Based on their calculations, Cauley-Stein's average number was 54.3. Fox's was 65.0. The lower the number, the better apparently.

The fourth-year center averaged 11.9 points and 8.4 rebounds in 81 games for the Kings this past season. His scoring dropped from the season before, but those rebounding numbers were a career-high.

[RELATED: Cauley-Stein improve, but was it enough?]

Cauley-Stein had his share of run-ins with Kings fans during the season. After a December loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, Cauley-Stein appeared to put a price tag on his effort level. That didn't sit well in the Kingdom.

Then, in early January, Cauley-Stein took a shot at his critics in an Instagram post regarding his rebounding skills.

Despite what Bleacher Reports' numbers say, they don't pass the eye test. Fox and Hield were the players that led the Kings to a surprising 39-43 record, not Cauley-Stein.

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