Report: Pelicans, Nance agree to two-year, $21.6 million extension
Larry Nance has been a stabilizing influence in New Orleans since coming over mid-season as part of the trade for CJ McCollum. Nance is a versatile player who can play the four or the five, knocks down his threes, is very strong on the glass, can be a disruptive defender in passing lanes, and fits in — and he has the veteran attitude of work this team needs.
So the Pelicans have reached an extension to keep the 29-year-old around for two years past this coming season, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
New Orleans Pelicans F Larry Nance Jr., has agreed on a two-year, $21.6 million contract extension, his agent Mark Bartelstein of @PrioritySports tells ESPN. Nance’s total deal ties him to the franchise for three years and $31.3 million. pic.twitter.com/dZl6bewRxB— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 1, 2022
The extension, tying Nance Jr. to the franchise through the 2024-2025 season, allows him to join key franchise players – including Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram and CJ McCollum -- on long-term deals.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 1, 2022
This is a signing that should make Pelicans fans happy. Importantly, it makes CJ McCollum happy — they are tight and this is something McCollum wanted to see. The money on this deal seems fair, about the league average for a solid rotation player.
Nance is the kind of veteran this team needs considering its young core of Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram (just turned 25), Herb Jones, and guys like Trey Murphy III, Jose Alvarado, and others. Nance compared it to the young Lakers teams he was on, but noted that team lacked the same level of veteran leadership this Pelicans team has.
We may see more Nance at the five lineups — small ball with Zion at the four — to close games this season in New Orleans, that could be their best lineup because Nance can defend but also spaces the floor for Zion on offense. Coach Willie Green has a lot of different players and matchups to experiment with.
And now he has the stability of Nance for a few more years.