Cavs: What’s cause for Collin Sexton’s shooting discrepancies at home vs. away?

Cleveland Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff (left) and Cleveland guard Collin Sexton converse in-game. (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)
Cleveland Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff (left) and Cleveland guard Collin Sexton converse in-game. (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) /

Collin Sexton has established himself as the Cleveland Cavaliers‘ go-to player in just three seasons and is the most consistent scorer that Cleveland has had over the last decade outside of LeBron James and Kyrie Irving. This year was easily the best year of Sexton’s career and he had a strong case of being the Cavs’ first All-Star since LeBron James’ departure.

On the year, Sexton has averaged 24.5 points and 4.4 assists per game on 47.5/37.3/81.2 shooting splits. Sexton is a consistent scoring option that’s been mostly durable for the Cavaliers and his continued efforts to help the team have been well documented throughout the entire NBA. Even with that, however, there has been one peculiar thing about Sexton when taking a deeper dive at his stats.

Looking at his splits, at home Sexton averages 25.6 points per game compared to 23.2 points per game on the road. The dip in scoring on the road isn’t drastic enough to be noteworthy but his shooting is. At home, Sexton shoots the three-ball at 42.3 percent but his shooting takes a significant dip on the road to just 30.6 percent.

So what’s the reasoning behind Sexton’s home vs. away shooting discrepancies?

The most logical reasoning behind Sexton’s subpar three-point shooting on the road can be attributed to the lack of road practices and practices overall that the Cavaliers have had. With NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s decision to shorten the 2020-21 season to just 72 games, that meant for a lot more back-to-backs and three games in four nights for all NBA teams.

With this season being ramped up, limiting the amount of practices teams had was essential to prevent injuries. Another reason for the limitations to practicing was due to COVID-19 rules put in place early in the season to try and stop the spread of the deadly virus.

For a player like Sexton, those extra repetitions in between games are key to help stay in rhythm so it doesn’t come as a shock as to why his shooting dips so much on the road. It also seems as if Sexton tries to work around his shooting woes on the road as he has attempted 42 fewer three-point shots on the road as opposed to at home, despite just playing four more home games.

Lastly, stats show that the gameplan for Sexton and the team is different on the road vs. at home. For Sexton, his usage rate drops two percentage points from 29.6 to 27.4 percent. The most interesting thing that the stats show about his discrepancies is his on-ball vs. off-ball game at Home vs. Away.

On the road, 61.8 percent of his three-point shots made are assisted compared to 73.0 percent of his three-point shots being assisted at home.

There are other reasons that can add context to Sexton’s shooting woes on the road like injuries that lead to inconsistencies within the team. There’s also the point that these injuries can lead to complicated lineups for Cleveland which allows for teams to collapse or allow for more focus towards Sexton.

Adam Silver has already talked about the hope of the NBA returning back to “regular schedules” in the 2021-22 NBA season, as’s Steve Aschburner noted, which will allow for more practices for the Cavaliers, allowing for the team and Sexton to keep and find a rhythm in between games.

Outside of that, adding more talent to the roster can help the offense run smoother, allowing for better and easier shots for Collin Sexton, Isaac Okoro, feasibly Darius Garland to some extent, to go with Jarrett Allen and others.

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Seeing as this season has been a difficult one considering the circumstances, it’s safe to believe that Sexton’s shooting discrepancies this year are an outlier, and his home vs. away splits should be more even next season.