The Golden State Warriors won their first NBA championship in 40 years, and now they’re hungry for more. The team might be competing with the Cleveland Cavaliers again next season.
The Memphis Grizzlies have been a force to be reckoned with this season. Winning 22 games, they are currently the number one seed of the Western Conference and rank 8th in points per game at 110.3 PPG on average. The team has also seen success from their new faces, as Jaren Jackson Jr., Deyonta Davis and Wayne Selden Jr.-all first round draft picks-have made an impact so far this yearThe Philadelphia Phillies showed just how important good pitching can be. The team acquired veteran starting pitcher Jake Arrieta in a trade with the Chicago Cubs, who won 15 games this season and had more quality starts than any other MLB club. Philly has been trying to assemble an elite roster for years but still hasn’t managed to make it past the NLCS title round since 2008 when they lost to eventual champion Boston Red Sox.
The “slouch posture” is a common problem that many people have. This can lead to back problems and other health issues. The team of the New York Knicks has been working hard to change this, and they believe that they are now not a slouch anymore.
The NBA rankings, particularly in the Eastern Conference, look a lot different this season than they did last year after the first month. The Washington Wizards are tied for first place with the Brooklyn Nets, while the Chicago Bulls are third and the Cleveland Cavaliers, who are without LeBron James, are fourth.
The latter has enjoyed a solid start to the year, demonstrating that its renovation is on track, if not ahead of time. Darius Garland, one of the team’s finest young players, recently issued a strong message to the rest of the NBA.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are off to a good start in the NBA season 2021-22.
On Nov. 5, 2021, Darius Garland and the Cleveland Cavaliers celebrate their victory against the Toronto Raptors. | Getty Images/Mark Blinch
The Cleveland Cavaliers have had a terrific start to the season, despite some obstacles. Kevin Love and Lauri Markkanen, two of their big men, have spent some time away from the squad owing to health and safety protocols. Collin Sexton, the team’s best scorer in recent years, has also torn his meniscus and will be sidelined indefinitely.
Despite this, the squad has achieved success.
Cleveland has a 9-5 record after defeating the Atlanta Hawks, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers, and Portland Trail Blazers in its first 14 games. It also won 91-89 against the Boston Celtics after coming back from a 19-point deficit.
This year, the Cavs haven’t had a single player dominate. It’s been a team effort, with five players averaging over 12.0 points per game, not counting Sexton.
Darius Garland has taken another stride forward in his growth this season, averaging 16.8 points, 7.1 assists, and career-best field (48.7%) and 3-point percentages (40.3 percent ). Jarrett Allen is continuing his climb to become one of the NBA’s finest big men, averaging 14.2 points and 10.9 rebounds per game. Rookie Evan Mobley has also showed he has what it takes to become a star in the league, with 15.6 points and 7.9 rebounds per game.
So far this year, their players have shown to be a force to be reckoned with, and Garland has made it clear that no one should underestimate them.
The NBA was placed on notice by Darius Garland.
Garland has already shown a lot this season with his performance on the court, but he wants the rest of the league to know who the Cavs are this season, and he has made many forceful statements to that effect.
According to The Athletic, Garland stated after the team’s 98-78 triumph against the Detroit Pistons on Nov. 12: “We’re some dogs.” “You’re not simply going to roll over us in Cleveland anymore.” We’re going to show some grit, some competitiveness, and that’s what we’re going to attempt to do every night.”
Following the Cavs’ come-from-behind victory against the Celtics, he reiterated that the squad would not “roll over.”
“We’re here; we’re no longer slackers,” he told Bally Sports. “We’ve just returned from  down. That’s the dog we’ve been discussing, that’s the struggle; that’s the tenacity we constantly mention.”
His statements have been forceful, especially given the Cavs’ lack of playoff success since LeBron James left in 2018. Since 1997-98, the club hasn’t made the playoffs without James on the roster.
Is this success, however, sustainable? Is the Cleveland Cavaliers a legitimate threat this season?
This season, Darius Garland and the Cavaliers have been more consistent.
While Garland’s remarks may seem premature, given that the Cavs have only played 14 games thus far, they have been more consistent this season than in past seasons.
They’ve stopped teams like the Hawks, Nuggets, and Clippers to under 100 points on defense, and their 104.6 defensive rating ranks eighth in the NBA.
Sure, the big names have been crucial on offense night in and night out. Garland, Mobley, and Allen are and will continue to be the team’s most important players for years to come. Role players like Ricky Rubio and Cedi Osman, on the other hand, have been outstanding. Rubio is averaging 13.7 points per game and shooting 37.8 percent from 3-point range, both career highs. In a victory against the New York Knicks, he scored 37 points and added 10 assists.
On the other side, Osman is averaging 9.8 points per game and shooting a career-high 40.6 percent from beyond the arc.
The Cavaliers’ greatest worries are whether they can maintain their high-level defensive performance for the whole season, not just 14 games, and if they can hold up offensively without Sexton.
If they can show that they can accomplish both of those things, Garland may be correct; the Cavaliers might be a club that other teams should keep an eye on. Cleveland’s bark may really have some bite to it.
Basketball Reference provided the statistics.
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