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#pounditThursday, October 1, 2020

Collin Sexton: Cavaliers will be back in playoffs next season

The Cleveland Cavaliers took the NBA by surprise at the trade deadline back in February when they decided to become buyers despite having no shot at postseason contention. Collin Sexton appreciated that approach from the team, and he is confident it is going to pay off in the very near future.

In a recent interview with Morten Jensen of Forbes, Sexton said he understands that things have been a lot different for the Cavs since LeBron James left to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers, but the 21-year-old does not like to use the term “rebuild.”

“Every day we’ve got guys coming to work and working their butt off, so we don’t look at [the rebuild] too much, because we all put in that work and we have a full team of hard workers so we’re going to do whatever it takes to change it around, and turn this rebuild into winning,” Sexton said.

Rather than hold a fire sale at the trade deadline, the Cavs acquired star big man Andre Drummond in a trade with the Detroit Pistons and held onto Kevin Love. Drummond is set to become a free agent this summer and has not committed to re-signing with Cleveland, but Sexton is very optimistic about the 2020-21 season. When asked when he thinks the Cavs will return to the playoffs, Sexton said “next season.” Was he serious?

“Yes. Next season,” he said emphatically.

The Cavs are currently 19-46 with the NBA season suspended. Sexton is averaging an impressive 20.8 points per game, but the team still has a very long way to go. Even if Drummond re-signs, Cleveland is far from a lock to make the playoffs barring a big offseason move or two.

It’s unclear how much of a negative impact John Beilein had on Cavaliers players before he parted ways with the organization, but the Cavs recently showed they believe in JB Bickerstaff going forward. While Sexton isn’t going to admit he doesn’t expect Cleveland to contend next season, he could have just as easily provided a more vague response.

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