Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff extensively lauded Sexton for his offensive performance following the entertaining win.
“Where we are right now offensively with the bodies we have, he needs to be a focal point,” Bickerstaff said of Sexton. “He can beat his man. He can put pressure on the defense. They know what play you’re going to run, they know what set you’re going to run. It was almost like a playoff game. The playoffs come down to can you beat your man? We’re confident Collin can beat his man. It was literally trying to just put him in position where he could go and play a one-on-one basketball game.”
In addition, Bickerstaff compared Sexton’s dominance in crunch time to that of Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan.
“The old Doug Collins clip. Give the ball to Michael (Jordan) and get the f— out of the way,” Bickerstaff explained. “Just give him space to go do his thing.”
Sexton, 22, exploded for 42 points on 16-of-29 shooting from the field on top of five rebounds, five assists, two steals and one memorable block in the Cavs’ 147-135 double-overtime victory.
Furthermore, he nailed a clutch 3-pointer in Nets guard Kyrie Irving’s face to send the game into double overtime. Sexton then popped off for 15 points in the second overtime to shut down the Nets.
The University of Alabama product drew high praise from Irving and Nets superstar Kevin Durant.
Wednesday night marked the first time Irving, Durant and newcomer James Harden all played together for the Nets. Yet, it was Sexton who looked like the best superstar on the floor.