The Cavaliers waited all offseason to get another shot at the New York Knicks after their first-round playoff exit last season, and their first chance came on Tuesday night in a nationally televised matchup. Rather than redeem themselves, New York cruised past Cleveland to a 109-91 win.
It’d be wrong not to address that Cleveland was without three key players: Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen, and Caris LeVert. Donovan Mitchell was listed as questionable after sitting out on Saturday with hamstring soreness, but he played. If it weren’t for him, the Cavaliers might’ve lost by 40 points.
One player who was on the court was Evan Mobley, who said before the game that he and his team really wanted to “put it on” New York. He made his impact on the boards with a game-high 12 rebounds but shot 3-of-9 from the field for six points.
Evan Mobley’s words come back to haunt him after loss to New York
There was a lot of hype surrounding Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen leading up to New York and Cleveland’s first-round playoff series in April. The Knicks were supposed to not have an answer for the Cavaliers’ frontcourt duo, but the media forgot about Mitchell Robinson. The starting center averaged 9.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks in five games.
Mobley said he put on about seven pounds of muscle in the offseason, but it wasn’t near enough to muscle the Cavaliers’ way to a win on Tuesday. Hopefully, it won’t be enough for a redemption win on Wednesday, either.
In a weird NBA schedule wrinkle, the Knicks and Cavaliers are in New York for another game tonight, except this one won’t be on national television. If the game goes anything like the two contests did at MSG in the first round, Evan Mobley’s in for another nightmare.