Cleveland Cavaliers: Larry Nance Jr. feels ‘great;’ will make impact

Cleveland Cavaliers big Larry Nance Jr. looks to make a play. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Cleveland Cavaliers big Larry Nance Jr. looks to make a play. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Cavaliers have not had Larry Nance Jr. in action in their past seven games. Nance has been dealing with a “mystery” illness, and one in which reportedly caused him to actually lose up to nearly 20 pounds at one point.

It appears that Nance will be able to gain a good amount of the weight back, though, and/or has in due time, and it appears that he’s gotten better gradually.

In addition to that from Nance, it’s a plus that Jarrett Allen, who has missed Cleveland’s past eight games because of a concussion/concussion protocol, seems back, at least a solid extent.

And in relation to Nance and Allen, they are both reportedly set to return for the Cavaliers on Wednesday at the Charlotte Hornets, per Chris Fedor of

Both participated in the Cavs’ practice on Tuesday, per Fedor’s report, have been coming along, as Allen has steadily, and reportedly per Fedor, “was able to increase his exertion level without a setback near the end of last week.”

That’s a positive with Jarrett, as were these comments from Fedor’s report on Jr.

"“A source said Nance feels ‘great’ and is ‘absolutely pumped’ to be back.'”"

Nance will probably take a bit to be fully himself, but he’ll be impactful for the Cavs.

Nance, who has often started at the 4 in replacement of Kevin Love, who has missed most of the season (right calf injury complications), has contributed in a number of ways this season. Jr. has had 10.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per outing, and has also had 1.8 steals per contest.

Clearly, Nance should help the Wine and Gold from a playmaking perspective, and with Darius Garland (right ankle) and Collin Sexton (left groin) questionable on Wednesday, that sort of thing could come in handy.

Regardless, Nance is one of the Cavs’ best passers, and from a catch-and-shoot standpoint, he’s hit a career-best 37.9 percent of his three-point attempts this season as well, which has been another bright spot.

Nance of course defensively has been a difference-maker for Cleveland this season as well, though, and with his much-improved handle, he’s established himself as a legitimate grab-and-go threat, too. Perhaps we’ll see some of that from him in upcoming games.

Point being, both Nance, and Allen, for what it’s worth, are impact contributors for the Cavaliers, and Nance feeling “great” is really encouraging, as he’s such a key all-around player for Cleveland.

And with his versatility, to go with playmaking/catch-and-shoot viability, based on Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff’s comments in Fedor’s report, we should see Jr. at the 3 in some instances, too.

We’ve seen that be an effective wrinkle for the Wine and Gold, and per Bickerstaff and via Fedor, factoring in Dean Wade and Isaiah Hartenstein, too, both of whom have played very well of late, Bickerstaff “hinted” at Jr. perhaps even playing “more” at the 3. We’ll see on that front, ultimately.

In any case, while Bickerstaff/the Cavs coaching staff with have to figure out how to get their suddenly deep and talented frontcourt involved, with Isaac Okoro, when on the 3 man subject, too, coming on, it’s a positive to have that depth.

And with the Wine and Gold getting healthier, and we’ll see regarding Sexton/Garland, maybe a run for a play-in appearance could be in the cards.

dark. Next. Love seems to be finding his groove

Hopefully Nance and Allen are mostly good to go from here, though I would expect them to have some rust early, admittedly, and/or take a bit to fully get their wind in-game.