Sacramento Kings rookie Willie Cauley-Stein played 15 minutes Monday night as he works his way back from a dislocated finger that cost him 12 games, but he might not get a lot more time in the near future.
"I've not seen his conditioning, and I have a feeling it's probably behind a little bit to play as fast as we want to play," coach George Karl said, according to The Sacramento Bee.
Cauley-Stein, the sixth overall pick in last year's draft, is averaging 4.9 points and 5.0 rebounds in 18 minutes per game this season.
"I think the thing that sticks in the back of my head is I didn't think he was in great shape in training camp, so I'm worried," Karl said, according to the newspaper.
Although Karl was pleased with Cauley-Stein's approach during rehabilitation, he feels he's not ready to take the next step.
"I'm sure he's been on the treadmill," Karl said, according to the Bee. "I'm sure he's done all the extra work. I'm sure [trainer] Chip [Schaefer] has kicked his butt pretty good, but basketball conditioning is different from treadmill conditioning. It's a different energy, a different stress, a different tension. But in the same sense, I don't think I'm going to play him 10 minutes straight."