Cavaliers' Andre Drummond, Larry Nance Jr. Out vs. Timberwolves Due to Injuries

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 1, 2021

FILE - In this Feb. 12, 2020, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers' Andre Drummond plays against the Atlanta Hawks in the first half of an NBA basketball gamein Cleveland. General manager Koby Altman wasn't necessarily in the market for another front court player, not with Tristan Thompson, Kevin Love and Larry Nance Jr. already on the roster. But he said the chance to add a player of Drummond's caliber, a versatile, rebounding machine and proven veteran who will make the Cavs' younger players better immediately and perhaps in the future, was too enticing.(AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Cleveland Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff told reporters big man Andre Drummond and forward Larry Nance Jr. will not play Monday's game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Drummond spent parts of the first eight seasons of his career with the Detroit Pistons, but the Cavs acquired him prior to last season's trade deadline for only John Henson, Brandon Knight and a 2023 second-round pick.

In eight games with the Cavaliers last season, Drummond averaged 17.5 points, 11.1 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.4 blocks. When taking his time with the Pistons into account, he put up 17.7 points, 2.7 assists, 1.9 steals and 1.6 blocks in 2019-20.

So far this season, his first full campaign in Cleveland, Drummond is averaging 18.5 points, 15.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocks.

The 27-year-old Drummond is a two-time All-Star and four-time NBA rebounding champion, but his future beyond this season is somewhat in question. He exercised the $28.7 million option in his contract to return to the Cavs this season, but he can become a free agent during the offseason.

The Cavaliers are not one of the NBA's best teams, so Drummond's potential absence won't have much of an impact on their season as a whole.

One thing Drummond possibly missing time does do, however, is make it more difficult for the Cavs to evaluate him and determine whether he is a long-term fit.

The Cavaliers don't have much of an interior presence aside from Drummond, so teams will likely be able to have their way in the paint until he returns.

Jarrett Allen and JaVale McGee will likely see the biggest boost in playing time while Drummond is out.

As for Nance, he is averaging 9.6 points and 6.9 rebounds as one of Cleveland's secondary playmakers. His presence isn't quite as important as Drummond's, and Taurean Prince and Cedi Osman will likely see an uptick in playing time while he is sidelined.