Cavaliers Rumors: Larry Nance Jr. Signs 4-Year, $45 Million Contract Extension

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistOctober 15, 2018

INDEPENDENCE, OH - SEPTEMBER 24: Larry Nance Jr. #22 of the Cleveland Cavaliers on Media Day at Cleveland Clinic Courts on September 24, 2018 in Independence, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

Forward Larry Nance Jr. is reportedly part of the Cleveland Cavaliers' long-term plans.

According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the Cavaliers and Nance agreed to a four-year contract extension worth $45 million. Nance was acquired by Cleveland last season as part of the return package in the trade that sent Isaiah Thomas and Channing Frye to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Ben Axelrod of WKYC noted the extension will keep Nance with the Cavaliers through the 2022-23 campaign and avoids a situation where he would have been a restricted free agent next offseason.

Nance—the son of three-time All-Star and former Cavaliers player Larry Nance—appeared in 24 regular-season games for Cleveland in 2017-18 and averaged 8.9 points and 7.0 rebounds a night behind 55 percent shooting from the field.

His role was reduced during a playoff run that resulted in an NBA Finals loss to the Golden State Warriors, but he still averaged 4.8 points and 4.5 boards a night in 20 games.

Nance is just 25 years old and a potential frontcourt building block as the team looks to the future after LeBron James joined the Lakers this offseason. He also impressed on the defensive side considering Cleveland's defensive rating was 101.9 when he was on the floor compared to 113.5 when he was off it, per NBA.com.

He has length at 6'9" to bother shooters but enough athleticism to stay in position against versatile forwards who can handle the ball.

Look for Nance to continue serving as a defensive leader for the Cavaliers as they attempt to establish themselves as contenders without James.

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