With the third pick in the 2021 draft now headed their way, the Cavaliers are set to consider a litany of offseason moves, including the possibility of trading 22-year-old combo guard Collin Sexton. However, sources close to Sexton anticipate that he will be part of the club’s long-term outlook, according to Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com.
“Our guys are hungry. I think they understand that there’s talent here and that has to now translate into wins at some point,” team general manager Koby Altman said at the conclusion of the Cavaliers’ season, when the team finished with a disappointing 22-50 record. “It’s on me to help supplement that young talent and it’s on (head coach J.B. Bickerstaff) to keep growing the culture here.”
The 6’1″ Sexton shares an undersized starting backcourt with fellow 6’1″ recent lottery selection Darius Garland. Sexton had a standout season statistically, averaging career highs of 24.3 PPG and 4.4 APG, while tying his career highs of 3.1 RPG and 1.0 SPG.
There’s more out of the Central Division:
- Given that they’re now armed with the No. 3 overall pick, it’s fair to expect growth from the Cavaliers next season, writes Jason Lloyd of The Athletic. “I don’t want to put the pressure and the burden on the young core that it’s playoffs or bust, although that’s sort of what they’re talking about,” GM Koby Altman told Lloyd on Bally Sports Great Lakes’ “Drennan Live.” “If it’s the play-in tournament, if it’s playoffs, that’s where their mindset is and what they’re thinking about every day.” Lloyd notes that his preference would be to trade leading scorer Sexton, eligible for a lucrative contract extension this summer, in exchange for a proven veteran.
- The Cavaliers will have a lot of optionality during the 2021 offseason, as Bobby Marks of ESPN details in a detailed look at Cleveland’s summer. Marks contends that, with a high draft pick in a loaded, top-heavy 2021 draft, the Cavaliers will be able to build on their intriguing young core of guards Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, wing Isaac Okoro, and center Jarrett Allen, should the team opt to retain everyone. Marks notes that, because the Cavaliers’ salary cap is clogged with veteran contracts, the team needs to maximize the on-court value of those pricey veterans, including former All-Star Kevin Love.
- Though Bucks All-Star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo didn’t get along with swingman Khris Middleton during their first season together in 2013/14 as they battled one another for playing time, Antetokounmpo says he trusts his sharp-shooting sidekick “to death” now, as Eric Nehm of The Athletic writes. With the Bucks just two wins away from their first NBA Finals appearance in 47 years (not a typo), Middleton put on an offensive clinic in a triumphant Game 3 victory over the Hawks, pouring in 38 points to go along with 12 rebounds and seven assists. “It’s great seeing this guy, man, the way we started, the way we are, the way he started and the way that he is right now, just closing games,” Antetokounmpo said. “That’s what we need from Khris. We need him to be aggressive. We need him to be taking over games, make good decisions, and play off him.”