Larry Nance Jr. may have been traded from Cleveland to Portland over the holiday season, but he’s still willing to defend his former Cavaliers teammates.

Before the 2021-22 season, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix spoke With a few scouts around the NBA to get their unfiltered opinions about every team in the league. One scout who evaluated the Cavaliers had some not-so-nice things to say about Colin Sexton, who averaged 24.3 points and 4.4 assists per game in 2020-21.

All 30 star rating: PG | SG | SF | PF | NS

Scout thoughts on Sexton and the Cavs, according to Mannix:

I think Colin Sexton is a backup and a piercing. None of his teammates are like him. I like [Darius] Garland. I actually love Garland. I think he’s playing hard. He presses you because he can shoot, he can pass, and he’s more willing to pass. He’s not out there trying to get his stats and go home the same way as Sexton. I don’t think they can play these two little guards together and have a lot of them. I thought they were on the right track last year until they traded with Garrett Allen and basically told [Andre] Drummond We’re not taking you back, because they were hanging around defensively around that top 10 area… Evan Mobley seems to me the real deal in terms of his talent, his skill. Again, he’s a freshman who floated some in college so we’ll see how it goes. Not a great Garrett Allen man. It’s fine but nothing crazy. [Isaac] Okoro seems to have the potential to be a very good defender but I don’t know how much more than that.

These quotes quickly started going viral on social media and eventually made their way to Nance, who played alongside Sexton from 2018 to 2021. Clearly, Nance didn’t agree with the scouts’ harsh assessment.

“Whoever said this moron knows nothing of anything going on in Cleveland,” Nance wrote on Twitter. “I would have hidden behind anonymity too if I was that bad at my job.”

Sexton has been a polarizing player since the Cavs picked him with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. Early in his rookie season, Sexton reportedly left Cleveland veterans frustrated because they felt he hadn’t. “You know how to play” And he doesn’t seem interested in working on his weaknesses. He posted impressive numbers, but critics questioned whether he was actually contributing to the win. It has also been the subject of trade rumors as recently as last summer.

However, Cavaliers general manager Kobe Altman told reporters during the team’s media day that the organization and Sexton wanted to reach an agreement on a contract extension in order to keep him in Cleveland.

“We’re definitely working with his representatives to find out, but this is someone who’s been with us since the beginning of this thing in terms of where we’ve been in the past three years,” Altman said last month. “We love him. We want him here for the long-term. We’ll deal with that behind closed doors, but the feelings are mutual regarding something long-term.”

The deadline for NBA teams to sign players on the junior range stretches is Monday at 6 p.m. ET.

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