Larry Donnell Nance is a retired American professional basketball player. A 6 ft 10 in forward from Clemson University, Nance played 13 seasons in the NBA as a member of the Phoenix Suns and Cleveland Cavaliers.
Nance scored 15,687 career points and grabbed 7,352 career rebounds, but he is perhaps best known as the first winner of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest in 1984, earning him the nickname "The High-Ayatolla of Slamola". Nance was a model of consistency throughout his NBA career. He averaged over 16 points and 8 rebounds per game for all eleven seasons as a starter. His best scoring average year was in the 1986â€“1987 NBA season, where he averaged 22.5 points per game. Always among the highest in field goal percentage, Nance was an excellent mid-range shooter as well as a talented inside player.
Nance was involved in a trade between the Suns and the Cavaliers in 1988. Nance's stint in Phoenix came to an end on Feb. 25, 1988, when, with the Suns struggling to a 16â€“35 mark, he was traded with Mike Sanders and Detroit's No. 1 pick in 1988 to Cleveland for Kevin Johnson, Mark West, Tyrone Corbin and Cleveland's first and second round picks in 1988 and the Lakers' second round pick in 1989.