Managing expectations are key to helping new NBA players succeed. It's as true for Cavs rookie Collin Sexton as it is for the rest of them.
In fact, relieving pressure and integrating him into stardom slowly is the reason why ex-head coach Lue was very careful with his minutes.
Per Joe Vardon of The Athletic, Cavs former coach Tyronn Lue did not want to play Sexton too much early this season in part to protect him from being compared to former Cleveland point guard, Kyrie Irving. Apparently, Lue thought it would be bad for Sexton’s development to be unfairly compared to Irving the season after losing LeBron, all while the Cavs were losing on the court too.
When you think about it, the comparisons were inevitable. Essentially, the team traded Kyrie for Sexton. The Brooklyn pick that they traded Irving for ended up being the pick they used to draft the kid. He wears the same number (2) as Kyrie, plays the same position, and would be their only young prospect with a real chance of stardom. He's practically a re-incarnated version of Uncle Drew himself.
With this in mind, was it smart to limit Sexton's playing time? If he would have played well with the extra minutes, it might have helped speed up his development and boost his confidence. Then again, we've seen how hard it is to overcome pressures like that.
Truthfully, it really doesn't matter now anyway. Lue is gone now, so Collin Sexton will really get the chance to show what he's got. We'll see in time whether or not that's the right call.