Darius Garland reveals Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff's shrewd tactics to take down Magic in 2024 NBA Playoffs

Darius Garland reveals Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff
Darius Garland reveals Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff's shrewd tactics to take down Magic in 2024 NBA Playoffs.

Cleveland Cavaliers All-Star guard Darius Garland revelead that they are preparing to make their first-round NBA playoff showdown with the Orlando Magic a physical one.

The six-year NBA veteran was cited as saying in a post on X (formerly Twitter) by NBA Central that their practice sessions this week have had coach J.B. Bickerstaff putting more emphasis on physicality, punctuated by a lot of holding and grabbing.

Check out the screenshot of the post below:

Darius Graland on their practice sessions this week
Darius Graland on their practice sessions this week

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The Cavaliers earned a first-round playoff date with the Magic after securing the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference following a 48-34 record. Orlando was just a game behind them at fifth with a win-loss card of 47-35.

The two teams split their four regular season games, leaving their playoff showdown as the decider.

Cleveland drew first blood in their regular season battle, winning 121-111 on Dec. 6 at home, with Donovan Mitchell leading the way with 35 points. Darius Garland backstopped him in the win, finishing with 26 points and nine assists.

Days later, on Dec. 11, it was the Magic's turn to emerge on top, 104-94, thanks to second-year man Paolo Banchero, who had a double-double of 20 points and 10 rebounds.

The next two games went the same route, with the Cavaliers chalking up a win, 126-99, on Jan. 22, and the Magic exacting payback in their next encounter on Feb. 22 with a 116-109 victory.

The best-of-seven first-round playoff series between the Cavaliers and the Magic commences on Saturday in Cleveland.

Darius Garland confident of deeper playoff run this time

The Cleveland Cavaliers are making their second straight playoff appearance, but unlike last year, Darius Garland is confident of making a deeper postseason run.

Cleveland was upset by the lower-seeded New York Knicks in the opening round of the playoffs last year, falling, 4-1, which left a bad taste in the mouth for the team.

Armed with that experience and having hurdled various adversities through the course of the season, Garland believes they are poised to make bigger waves in this year's playoffs.

As per Sports Illustrated, the one-time NBA All-Star said:

"I'm very confident. I'm confident with everyone on this roster. We've been through a lot of adversity and we've surpassed everything. We have playoff experience so we know what it feels like. We know what it takes to get there and what it's going to be like in the moment."

For the season, Darius Garland is averaging 18 points, 6.1 assists, 2.7 rebounds and 1.3 steals in 33 minutes in 57 games for the Cavaliers.

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