NBA Rumor: Larry Nance Jr Trade

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Larry Nance Jr pens goodbye letter to Cleveland

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Lauri Markkanen officially acquired by Cleveland in sign-and-trade deal

The Cleveland Cavaliers have acquired forward Lauri Markkanen (LAU-ree MARK-a-nin) in a sign and trade agreement from Chicago, Cavaliers General Manager Koby Altman announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts. In a three-team deal, Cleveland traded forward Larry Nance Jr. to Portland and a protected 2023 second round pick (via Denver) to Chicago. The Bulls also received forward Derrick Jones Jr. from Portland and the Trail Blazers’ lottery protected 2022 first round pick as part of the trade.

Kobi Altman: “I also want to thank Larry for his outstanding and impactful contributions to our team, both on and off the court. His selfless acts of kindness and support for small businesses in Northeast Ohio during a global pandemic says a lot about his character. He remained steadfast in his commitment to helping others in their time of need and it was an inspiration to us all. Larry truly embraced the community, its fans and his teammates and he will be missed. The Cavaliers have a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for Larry as a person and a player, and we wish him and his family all the best in Portland.”

Sources tell that Nance, who turns 29 in January and is better suited for a win-now organization, naturally started wondering about his role and potential playing time. Would it be diminished? Would he need to play the 5? Shift to the 3 in certain lineups? Even though there was a path to make the situation work, the two sides discussed the possibility of moving him to a better situation, one that had more available minutes, a possible starting or closing role and winning potential.

According to sources close to Nance, he wasn’t caught off guard by Friday’s agreed-to deal. He is happy about his fit with the Blazers — and a chance to play with Damian Lillard and buddy CJ McCollum. Portland, which finished sixth in the Western Conference last season and hired Chauncey Billups to replace Terry Stotts, gives Nance a chance to play meaningful games, something he unsurprisingly wants at this stage of his career. If the Blazers implode, or shift into a rebuild, Nance can leave as an unrestricted free agent at the end of 2022-23.

The Cleveland Cavaliers spent the last few months telling interested teams Larry Nance Jr. wasn’t available in a trade. That didn’t stop the calls from coming. The first two post-deadline games spotlight why. Why playoff contenders — New Orleans, Miami, Dallas, Boston and Philadelphia — were desperately trying to pry him away. Why the Cavs were determined to keep him, turning down at least one offer with multiple late first-round picks. Why the organization considers him a core piece despite being a 28-year-old part-time starter (coming off the bench when Kevin Love is healthy) on a kid-friendly roster.

Nance would help a lot of teams and he’s on a multi-year bargain deal that makes it easy to come up with matching salaries. He’s the kind of versatile piece that contenders covet because of his defense, playmaking, shooting and impact on winning. According to sources, Nance is the player the Cavs have received the most calls about. Sources say the Minnesota Timberwolves have been aggressively pursuing him since the offseason. Nance’s old teammate and buddy D’Angelo Russell is a strong Nance advocate. Boston, Philadelphia, New Orleans, Miami and Dallas have also shown interest.

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ wild trade deadline began with a Los Angeles Lakers deal, acquiring guard Jordan Clarkson and forward Larry Nance Jr. in exchange for guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Channing Frye and Cleveland’s own 2018 protected first-round pick, which goes to the Lakers unless it falls between 1-3. “Jordan and Larry add athleticism, energy and length to both ends of the court for us,” general manager Koby Altman said in a release announcing the deal. “This trade is also a reflection of our continuing commitment to invest in our roster in ways that help us evolve and compete at the highest level now and into the future.”

Larry Nance Jr. on trade rumors: “I was a little bit surprised [by the rumors], but at the end of the day, it’s a business. If something like that were to happen, if I were to get traded to a different team, it would be a team that would value me. I try to look at it like that, just as an opportunity, if that were to happen. Obviously, I’d love to stay in L.A. But if it happens, there’s nothing that I can do about it, but it would be a new opportunity and hopefully one that I can seize and make the best of.”

Has anyone from the front office talked to Larry Nance Jr. about the rumors: “No. And somebody from the front office doesn’t need to come explain what’s going on to me. It’s trade-deadline time. Even if I was averaging 40 points, they’d still be talking like, ‘Oh, he might get traded for so-and-so.’ I mean, they’re talking about possible trades for Anthony Davis and Kawhi [Leonard]! So, come on, _everyone_ can get brought up and talked about. We’re professionals, and it’s our job to just deal with it. I come in every day and do my job, regardless of what’s going on.”

Indeed, it looks like there will be a good deal of time. That’s because the Lakers are not moving any of the three, even as we enter the silly season of NBA trade discussions. According to league sources, the Lakers have not included any of the three into trade discussions, and do not figure to change that. They’re unlikely to consider moves involving their two other young role players, Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr., who figure to be key parts of the rotation in the near future.
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September 26, 2021 | 6:15 am EDT Update

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: "There’s no room for players who do not want to get vaccinated"

“The NBA should insist that all players and staff are vaccinated or remove them from the team,” NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar tells Rolling Stone. “There is no room for players who are willing to risk the health and lives of their teammates, the staff and the fans simply because they are unable to grasp the seriousness of the situation or do the necessary research. What I find especially disingenuous about the vaccine deniers is their arrogance at disbelieving immunology and other medical experts. Yet, if their child was sick or they themselves needed emergency medical treatment, how quickly would they do exactly what those same experts told them to do?”
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Kyrie Irving following and liking conspiracy theories about COVID-19 vaccines

Irving, who serves as a vice president on the executive committee of the players’ union, recently started following and liking Instagram posts from a conspiracy theorist who claims that “secret societies” are implanting vaccines in a plot to connect Black people to a master computer for “a plan of Satan.” This Moderna microchip misinformation campaign has spread across multiple NBA locker rooms and group chats, according to several of the dozen-plus current players, Hall-of-Famers, league executives, arena workers and virologists interviewed for this story over the past week.
“There are so many other players outside of him who are opting out, I would like to think they would make a way,” says Kyrie’s aunt, Tyki Irving, who runs the seven-time All-Star’s family foundation and is one of the few people in his regular circle of advisors. “It could be like every third game. So it still gives you a full season of being interactive and being on the court, but with the limitations that they’re, of course, oppressing upon you. There can be some sort of formula where the NBA and the players can come to some sort of agreement.”
Storyline: Coronavirus Vaccine

At least 50 NBA players yet to receive a single COVID-19 vaccine dose?

A spokeswoman for Irving declined to respond to a list of questions regarding his vaccination and playing status, and Irving did not immediately respond to a message from Rolling Stone. But as teams return to pre-season training camps next week, fifty to sixty NBA players have yet to receive a single vaccine dose, league sources tell RS. Most are considered merely reluctant skeptics. Some of the holdouts, however, amount to their own shadow roster of anti-vaxxers mounting a behind-the-scenes resistance to Covid protocols — and the truth.
Isaac considers un-vaxxed players to be vilified and bullied, and he thinks “it’s an injustice” to automatically make heroes out of vaccinated celebrities. He rejects the NBA’s proposal for a vaccine mandate and social distancing for players like him during team travel: “You can play on the same court. We can touch the same ball. We can bump chests. We can do all those things on the court. And then when it comes to being on the bus, we have to be in different parts of the bus? To me, it doesn’t seem logically consistent. “If you are vaccinated, in other places you still have to wear the mask regardless. It’s like, ‘OK, then what is the mask necessarily for?’” Isaac continues. “And if Kyrie says that from his position of his executive power in the NBPA, then kudos to him.”
Enes Kanter — the veteran center, devout Muslim and outspoken liberal — senses a creep of the religious right upon his workplace, which just happens to involve players like Isaac sweating all over him and yelling in his face: “If a guy’s not getting vaccinated because of his religion, I feel like we are in a time where the religion and science has to go to together,” he tells RS. “I’ve talked to a lot of religious guys — I’m like: ‘It saves people’s lives, so what is more important than that?’”
Storyline: Coronavirus Vaccine