Darius Garland is having a wonderful offseason and it keeps getting better.
The Cleveland Cavaliers point guard parlayed an impressive sophomore campaign with his inclusion to Team USA’s Select Team. But with the absence of Devin Booker, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday due to the NBA Finals, Garland will now be running alongside the senior team under Coach Gregg Popovich for the time being.
Team USA is promoting three Select Team members — San Antonio’s Keldon Johnson, Cleveland’s Darius Garland and Detroit’s Saddiq Bey — for exhibition games beginning Saturday. Devin Booker, Jrue Holiday, Khris Middleton will join USAB after Finals.
After a timid performance in his rookie year, Darius Garland showed flashes of his brilliance in 2020-21 for the Cavs. The 6-foot-1 guard showcased his playmaking and range en route to averaging 17.4 points and 6.1 assists per game while shooting 45% from the field and 39.5% from 3-point distance in year two.
Despite having a slight injury scare at the beginning of USA Basketball’s training camp, Garland proceeded to impress in Las Vegas, per Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com.
Darius Garland isn’t expected to get a ton of playing time for Popovich, but the experience he’ll get playing alongside the best of the best will be valuable to his growth as a player.
The coming months will include a number of critical decisions from the Cavs’ front office. The NBA Draft tops general manager Koby Altman’s laundry list of offseason tasks, including Jarrett Allen, Collin Sexton, and Kevin Love’s respective situations.
Amid all these lingering questions, watching Garland’s improvement is a breath of fresh air for the Cavs.