On Friday, Darius Garland dropped a truth bomb following the Cleveland Cavaliers’ five-game losing streak. Prevention is key. Despite the team’s recent struggles, the fourth-year guard said the vibe in Cleveland is “still pure.”
The Cavaliers are off to an 8-1 start to the season. However, they are now 8-6 and fourth overall in the Eastern Conference standings. Garland believes his team is slipping defensively.
According to a few NBA betting sites, the Cavaliers have the seventh-best odds to win the championship in 2023. See which sportsbooks are showing the highest odds for the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics.
#caves Point guard Darius Garland was asked about the reason for his team’s current five-game losing streak.
We stopped playing defense.
— Danny Cunningham (@RealDCunningham) November 18, 2022
“We stopped defending,” the Cavaliers guard said. This season with the 22-year-old, the Cavs are 1-6. They lost to the Bucks 113-98 on Wednesday.
“We’re not playing winning basketball,” Cavaliers coach JB Bickerstaff said following their fifth straight loss. “It’s that simple.
We have a formula that will or will allow us to be successful. Holding each other for that [standard] It’s what we have to do. Now it’s not us.
Darius Garland blamed the Cavaliers’ defensive effort on a five-game losing streak
In the second quarter of Cleveland’s 108-105 season-opening loss to the Toronto Raptors, Garland was put on Gary Trent Jr.’s eye with a sprained left eye. Garland missed five games.
The Cavaliers still dominate defensively as they surrendered 113 points to the Bucs and 129 against the Timberwolves on Sunday.
Through 14 games this season, Cleveland ranks eighth overall in points against, allowing 109.2 points per game. Their defensive efficiency rating is fifth-best in the NBA (1.067).
Players with 50+ points, 10+ threes, 5+ assists in NBA history:
And now Darius Garland. pic.twitter.com/Pdn2E1Hye0
— StatMuse (@statmuse) November 14, 2022
Offensively, the Cavaliers need to play better. They are averaging 114.7 points per game, 10th in the league. Garland scored a game-high 51 points in Cleveland’s 129-124 loss to the Timberwolves.
But inconsistencies are noticeable from game to game. Mitchell was also absent from the Cavaliers’ home loss to Minnesota. When healthy, the duo is one of the best in the league.
With Garland and Mitchell on the court together, Cleveland would need to score at least 117 points per game to keep up with the Celtics (120.4) or Sacramento Kings (120.3).
Perhaps the Cavaliers need to improve on both sides of the ball. The team is a 9.5-point favorite at home against the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night. This match will be telecast live at 7:30 pm ET.