Larry Nance Jr. Trade Rumors: 76ers, Celtics, T-Wolves, More Pursuing Cavs PF

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMarch 6, 2021

Cleveland Cavaliers' Larry Nance Jr. drives against the Philadelphia 76ers in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Multiple teams have reportedly shown interest in Cleveland Cavaliers forward Larry Nance Jr. ahead of the March 25 trade deadline.

According to Cleveland.com's Chris Fedor on Saturday, the Minnesota Timberwolves have "aggressively" pursued Nance since the offseason. The Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks and New Orleans Pelicans are also reportedly interested.

Fedor noted that while Nance isn't expected to be traded before the deadline unless the Cavs get "completely blown away" by an offer, teams have expressed more interest in him than any of their other players who are believed to be available.

Among the offers the Cavaliers reportedly received was a package including "multiple late-first-round picks."

The 28-year-old Nance is currently on the shelf with a finger injury that has caused him to miss Cleveland's past 12 games, but Fedor has reported he is expected to be ready to return for the Cavs' first game of the second half of the season on March 12 (h/t CBS Sports).

Nance has appeared in 19 games, including 18 starts, in this his fourth season as a member of the Cavs. He is averaging 9.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.9 steals in a career-high 33.4 minutes per contest, while shooting 48.3 percent from the field and a career-best 38.1 percent from beyond the arc.

Since showing flashes during his first three NBA seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, Nance has blossomed into a valuable and versatile player in Cleveland. He averaged a career-high 10.1 points per game last season and a career-high 8.2 rebounds per game the previous campaign.

Although Nance has been limited this season by injury, he has made a career-high 1.3 three-pointers per game. In his first four NBA seasons, Nance made just 0.2 trifectas per contest.

Nance is signed through the 2022-23 season at a reasonable rate after agreeing to a four-year, $44.8 million extension with the Cavs in 2018, per Spotrac.

Since he wouldn't be a rental, Nance could be a target for any team regardless of whether they are likely to make the playoffs this season or not.

Minnesota is the worst team in the NBA this season at 7-29, but Nance could be a fit alongside Karl-Anthony Towns in the frontcourt moving forward. Also, Fedor reported that Nance is close friends with T-Wolves guard D'Angelo Russell, who has advocated for him.

In terms of possible contenders, the Sixers, Celtics, Heat and Mavs all make sense as potential landing spots and would benefit from Nance's presence.

Philly is the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference, while the other three teams currently hold playoff spots as well.

The Celtics would perhaps benefit most from Nance because of their lack of high-impact players up front, but they may have to wait until the offseason to get their hands on him, based on Fedor's report.