When the Lakers first struck a deal with the Cavaliers during last season’s trade deadline, the circumstances saw the Cavs playing under different stakes than they are now.
Back then, they had LeBron, they had hope. As the favorites to once again reach the Finals, the Cleveland Cavaliers were experiencing an era where ultimate success was always within reach.
Larry Nance Jr. was traded to that Cavs team, right before everything fell apart.
James left, and so did the opportunity. Nance and young guys were given the keys, but the team was playing for the lottery instead of for Championships.
Yet, if he could, would he take it all back? Probably not.
Here’s what he said to Dan Woike of the L.A. Times:
“I’m still grateful for the trade,” Nance said. “I enjoyed my time in L.A. but Cleveland’s home for me. … I got to play in the Finals with one of the greatest players ever. I have no regrets about it. I’m happy as hell. Obviously, you want to win every game. You don’t get to the NBA without having that kind of a competitive nature.But I think for me as a player, the growth, the mistakes I’m allowed to make, the growth I’m allowed to be in the middle of, it’s super beneficial.
“I’m playing 30 minutes a night and getting to mess up and shoot threes and expand my game. I don’t think I’d be getting to do that if we weren’t in that situation.”
Unfortunately, Larry doesn’t seem to be taking advantage of this opportunity to “grow.” With just an average of 7.2 points per game, we certainly hoped to expect a little from him out of the gate.
In Cleveland, even with these low averages, the team is invested in him... and that has got to mean something.
He’s got family there, history there, and a whole lot more time to improve on his flashy game.
Could be a whole lot worse, right?