Now, there’s even worse news for Sexton.
Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton left Sunday night’s road game at New York in the second quarter with a left knee injury and did not return to action. Further examination of the injury and an MRI administered today at Cleveland Clinic Sports Health revealed a meniscus tear. Sexton will undergo additional evaluation after which time his status will be updated.
This is especially tough timing for Sexton, who’ll be a restricted free agent next summer after not signing an extension prior to the season.
Sources said Sexton sought a four-year deal in the $100 million range, but the Cavaliers wanted a fifth year on any agreement.
Rookie-scale extension can be for five years, as opposed to four or fewer, only if for the max. A max extension would’ve projected to pay Sexton $133 million over the first four seasons. Even if the fifth year were fully unguaranteed (at a projected $39 million salary), he presumably would’ve accepted that to get the max for four seasons.
Perhaps, Cleveland valued signing the 22-year-old Sexton to a five-year deal and therefore wanted to wait until free agency (when a five-year sub-max contract is allowed).
Of course, the Cavs – and any team – will now want to evaluate Sexton’s knee before making a long-term financial commitment.
More urgently, the Cavaliers must replace their starting shooting guard. Isaac Okoro could get a promotion when he returns from his own hamstring injury. Cedi Osman, Dylan Windler and even Denzel Valentine could get bigger roles. Cleveland could also use more two-point-guard lineups with Darius Garland and Ricky Rubio.