DAR Sports: The Rise Of Collin Sexton

By Jeff Axel

Many people that have been watching sports networks this week have been hearing about how the Nets have had bad consecutive losses to the Cleveland Cavaliers. On the contrary, the Cleveland Cavaliers are currently the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference at 8-7 riding a three game winning streak. The main reason behind this level of play is their 22 year old star guard Collin Sexton. Those two games against the Brooklyn Nets saw Sexton score a combined 67 points and 14 assists, proving he isn’t a fluke. There should be no more horrible takes about how the Cleveland Cavaliers got nothing in return in the Kyrie trade. No more of the talk that 2018 was a 2 guard draft between Luka and Trae Young. Collin Sexton is averaging a career high 26.8 PPG on 52% from the field and 47% from 3PT range to go with 4.2 APG and 1.3 SPG. He's emerging as one of the best young guards in the NBA.

Most people’s introduction to Collin Sexton was him not backing down from opponents and trash talking to players in high school. There was also the very rare and wild occurrence when he was in college at Alabama and his entire team fouled out to the point where they were playing 3 on 5 against Minnesota. In a game that replicated an old school version of 21, with Sexton facing triple teams, he still managed to score an efficient 40 points. The point is, Collin Sexton has been playing at a high level for a while and more people should start taking notice. At 2,988 career points, Sexton is 3rd in his draft class in scoring and is giving the Cleveland Cavaliers their first legitimate star post Lebron era. 

Even though we’re early in the season, I don’t think this start is a fluke. People bring up the low assist numbers for a guard his size but when you score on all three levels efficiently and improve your defense, some things can be overlooked. Also Sexton is 22 years old and rapidly improving every season. His rookie season, he averaged 16.7 PPG on 40% from 3PT. His 2nd season, he averaged 20.8 PPG on 47% from the field and 38% from 3PT. The thing that a lot of people sleep on is the fact that once they got rid of that racist John Beilien who called the team thugs and started playing under JB Bickerstaff, the team started playing at a higher level. JB Bickerstaff said before the bubble that the team was playing at a high level before the shut down and a lot of people scoffed at that but they’ve carried that momentum into this season.

During last season from Janurary to March (the shutdown), Collin Sexton averaged 24.8 PPG on 51% shooting from the field and 43% from 3PT with standout games including 41 points on 57% from the field on March 4th against the Celtics, 32 points on 11-17 shooting against the Jazz on March 2nd, and 31 points on 55% FG against the Pelicans. This is quite an upward trajectory that Sexton is on and I see it continuing throughout this season. Even though I’m a Celtics fan and a part of me is still frustrated that we traded Isaiah Thomas and the draft pick that eventually became Collin Sexton for a two year Kyrie Irving rental that failed, it would be ironic if the Cavaliers won that trade in the long run. The Cavs have a nice rotation now with Taurean Prince, Darius Garland, Issac Okoro, Andre Drummond, Kevin Love, Jarrett Allen, and more with Collin Sexton leading the charge. If Sexton continues in his role as their new star, things can turn around for the Cavs. 

Sexton feels like he's slept on tremendously, but this season should be the one to wake up the fans going forward. I think a lot of the sleeping that people have done on Sexton revolves around his size personally. Let’s be real, if Sexton was about 6’7, he’d be talked about even more. He he’s scoring well against all-NBA level defenders like Marcus Smart, which speaks to his talent. See for yourself. 

The thing that I enjoy about Sexton’s game is he plays at his own pace and is never rushed, he can finish in the paint or from the 3 point line and he’s one of the young guys that utilizes the midrange game as well. He also has deceptive speed and change of pace that he uses really well with the pick and roll. One good example of that can be found below. 

Let me just state that I don’t give a damn about win shares, plus/minus, and the super advanced stats because in my opinion, those stats are deceptive. Yes, I’m more of an eye test guy and in my opinion this is the most talent the league has had under the age of 25 in NBA history and it’s time we start acknowledging that. We need to stop criticizing this era of players and start realizing how impactful guys are early in their careers. We need more representation in the NBA media field so I hope you guys support DAR Sports on this journey as we’re going to crank out articles and highlight and showcase the talent throughout the NBA. We also have 2 podcasts coming soon, so stay tuned for that. This is Jeff Axel formally known as young AXELICIOUS, back in my day I broke the haters off something vicious, signing off.



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