Cavaliers Rumors: Larry Nance Contract 'Next Up' After Kevin Love Extension

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 24, 2018

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Larry Nance Jr. (22) in the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, March 7, 2018, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The Cleveland Cavaliers will look to work out an extension with power forward Larry Nance Jr., ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported Tuesday.

Nance would be the second frontcourt player in Cleveland to receive a new deal after the Cavs announced Tuesday they have signed Kevin Love to a "multiyear contract extension."

Nance can become a restricted free agent after the 2018-19 season. As long as the Cavaliers make a $3.4 million qualifying offer, they would be able to match any offer sheet he signs with another team next summer.

Because of that, Cleveland wouldn't have much trouble re-signing Nance if both sides fail to agree to an extension.

The Cavs will likely want to avoid restricted free agency, though, on the off chance Nance receives a massive offer from another team.

Few would've expected Zach LaVine to get a four-year, $78 million offer sheet from the Sacramento Kings, which the Chicago Bulls matched. Similarly, the two-year, $40 million contract Jabari Parker signed with the Bulls was too expensive for the Milwaukee Bucks to match.

Free agents who fall short of max contract territory are often the hardest to predict in terms of market value, especially when factoring in the gamesmanship inherent in restricted free agency.

Nance's numbers don't jump off the page—8.7 points and 6.8 rebounds per game—but he was effective when he was on the floor this past season. According to Basketball Reference, he averaged 19.4 points and 15.3 rebounds per 100 possessions between his time with the Cavs and Los Angeles Lakers.

After Nance arrived from Los Angeles on Feb. 8, Cleveland's defensive rating was 102.5 with him on the floor, compared to 112.4 when he was on the bench, per NBA.com.

With Love a part of Cleveland's starting lineup for the foreseeable future, Nance can provide energy and rebounding off the bench for 20 to 25 minutes a night.