The suddenly hot Cleveland Cavaliers, who have won their last three games, will carry their momentum to the Big Apple to take on the New York Knicks on Sunday evening. The Cavs' surprising form will make their matchup with the Knicks very intriguing.
Coach J.B. Bickerstaff should be thrilled with how the youthful Cleveland Cavaliers have managed to develop while still winning. At 6-4 and without Kevin Love and Lauri Markkanen in their last game, the team has shown that they are still quite good. The win against the Toronto Raptors was invaluable in boosting their growing confidence against an elite team.
The New York Knicks provided an answer to their two-game losing skid with a sound thrashing of the Milwaukee Bucks on the defending champions’ home floor. Led by Julius Randle and Derrick Rose, the Knicks battled back from a 21-point hole to hand the Bucks their fourth consecutive home loss.
The New York Knicks know they will be facing a young but fearless team that is starting to play despite adversity and pressure. Randle and rising rookie Evan Mobley jostling in the post will be as good a matchup as any in the league.
Fixture: Cleveland Cavaliers vs New York Knicks | 2021-22 NBA season
Date & Time: Sunday, November 7th; 6:00 PM ET (Monday, November 8; 4:30 AM IST)
Venue: Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
Cleveland Cavaliers Preview
Over the course of their three-game winning streak, the Cleveland Cavaliers have beaten the Charlotte Hornets, Portland Trail Blazers and Toronto Raptors. Against quality teams, the Cavs have managed to eke out wins in close games. They won their last three games by a total of seven points, including a hairline 103-102 victory against the streaking Raptors.
The maturity of the youthful Cleveland Cavaliers is impressive. They tote a 4-3 record on the road. The Cavs are also winning these games with different players carrying the scoring load. They have had seven different scoring leaders in their 10 games this season.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are expected to carry this form in front of a rowdy and electrifying Madison Square Garden crowd. If they can maintain their composure and play their game, they would give the New York Knicks a tough test.
Key Player - Evan Mobley
Evan Mobley is the kind of player you have to see to understand his impact on the game. His current averages of 13.3 points, 8.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.1 steals look quite ordinary. However, these numbers do not paint a complete picture of what he can do on the floor for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Mobley’s versatility and IQ on defense, at such a young age, are already off the charts for the Cleveland Cavaliers. There are already comparisons to a few of the great defensive big men that the league has seen. Anybody who is mentioned in the same sentence as Kevin Garnett and Tim Duncan must be doing alright.
However, it’s not just in defense that Mobley has shone. He has allowed Bickerstaff to be creative with his lineup.
Bickerstaff has used him as part of a three-man big or as the lone big in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ small-ball version. Mobley will be such a key component for the Cavs that it won’t be surprising if the New York Knicks try to put the clamps on him this game.
Cleveland Cavaliers Predicted Lineup
G - Darius Garland | G - Collin Sexton | F - Dean Wade | F - Evan Mobley | C - Jarrett Allen
New York Knicks Preview
In their losses to the Toronto Raptors and Indiana Pacers, the embattled New York Knicks couldn't put up a consistent series of stops to help themselves win. Against the Milwaukee Bucks, the shoddy defense reared up its ugly head again, which led to a huge early deficit. Credit to the Knicks for never hanging their heads when the reigning champs were rolling.
The New York Knicks’ defense was solid enough, but it was their eagerness to rebound and pound the Bucks in the paint that paved the way for their win. New York’s 59-37 rebounding edge was the telling statistic that turned the game for the Knicks. They pummeled the Bucks with 54 interior points to put pressure on an undermanned defense that was missing Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez.
If the New York Knicks can regain the shooting touch to pair with their aggressive inside scoring, they’ll be tough to beat.
Key Player - Julius Randle
Coming into this game for the New York Knicks, the focus was to get Julius Randle going on offense. It’s not like he has not been playing, but his output has been below what the Knicks are accustomed to. Before the game against the Milwaukee Bucks, the All-Star forward was only averaging 15.8 points.
Tom Thibodeau’s adjustments worked to perfection as Randle was back to his bruising and versatile best. He lit up Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks with 32 points on top of 11-22 shooting from the field. The 26-year old was also instrumental in making The Greek Freak look ordinary with his on-ball and help defense.
Julius Randle is expected to lead the charge for the New York Knicks against another imposing Cleveland Cavaliers frontline.
New York Knicks Predicted Lineup
G - Kemba Walker | G - Evan Fournier | F - RJ Barrett | F -Julius Randle | C - Mitchell Robinson
Cavaliers vs Knicks Matchup Prediction
The Cleveland Cavaliers are in their best form since LeBron James left. They are coming in hot and full of confidence. No one’s expecting them to be rattled or cowed playing in the historic MSG and in front of a rabid crowd. They have the talent, energy and surprising composure when faced with adversity. They’ll need all of that and more against the New York Knicks.
New York are back on their home floor after thrashing the short-handed Milwaukee Bucks. Still, it was a morale-boosting win even after coming back from a huge deficit. They will surely have their hands full against this relentless Cleveland Cavaliers team.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are undermanned, and their inexperience could show against the New York Knicks playing inside MSG. The home team could get another win streak on Sunday.
Where to watch the Cavaliers vs Knicks game
MSG Networks and Bally Sports Ohio will cover the game live locally. The NBA League Pass will also simultaneously stream the game. Radio commentaries can be heard via WEPN and WTAM/WMMS/WNZN.
Poll : Which name would you prefer if we were to build a college sports website