The Cleveland Cavaliers may have lost to the Brooklyn Nets on Monday, but it isn’t all negative for the team. Not with Darius Garland providing fans something to be happy about and look forward to in the future.
Garland exploded for 46 points in the game, going for 14-of-20 from the field including 5-of-7 from deep. He was the lone bright spot for Cleveland, with the rest of the Cavs unable to even breach 20 points. The Nets proved to be too much for the Wine and Gold, especially with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving dropping 32 points each to power Brooklyn to the 125-117 win.
At least Garland’s performance was a bit of a consolation, though. Despite the loss, the All-Star guard made history and joined LeBron James and Kyrie Irving as the only Cavs players in team history to have multiple games with at least 45 points and five triples.
It is Garland’s second of such game, both of which came this 2022-23 season. Last November against the Minnesota Timberwolves, he put up 51 points on 10-of-15 shooting from deep. During that game, he also became the fourth player in team history–after James, Irving and Walt Wesley–to have a 50-point outing for the franchise.
The Cavs are currently on a two-game skid and 6-4 over their last 10 games, but despite that inconsistency, performances like Garland’s against the Nets gives the Cleveland faithful plenty of optimism for the short- and long-term outlook of the team.
Garland and co. have a lot of things to work on as seen in their latest defeat, though it’s certainly not a reason to panic.