‘Punch first and see what the refs do’ – FRUSTRATED Darius Garland wants Cavaliers to adopt a more aggressive approach in Game 2 vs Knicks

Cleveland Cavaliers look to bounce back after playoff debut loss to the New York Knicks

‘Punch first and see what the refs do’ – FRUSTRATED Darius Garland wants Cavaliers to adopt a more aggressive approach in Game 2 vs Knicks

Darius Garland (image via Nick Cammett/AP)

The Cleveland Cavaliers suffered a 101-97 defeat to the New York Knicks in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series on Saturday, and Cavs guard Darius Garland believes that his team was physically outmatched by the Knicks. Speaking to reporters after the game, Garland suggested that the Cavs need to be more aggressive and foul their opponents earlier in games to establish a physical presence.

Garland also noted that the Cavs lost several key battles, including points off turnovers, rebounding, fastbreak points, and second-chance points. He acknowledged that the physicality of the playoffs was a major factor in the loss, as many of the Cavs players were making their first postseason appearance.

“The refs let us play a lot. So we hit first and see the refs react,” Garland said. “Instead of being punched in the face and just laying down to it. I think that’s the mentality we have to have. Go punch first and see what the refs do, see if they blow the whistle or not. Just set the tone for the game with it.”

He went on to add: “The physicality was definitely the difference for us, A lot of us haven’t played in it. So it was a good learning experience. Now go back and watch the film and just see how we change everything and try to hit first. They kind of took us out of everything because they hit first and we didn’t hit back. We just laid down a little bit. And I think that was the game.”

Related: “No offense to Ja, Bane, Dejounte and Trae” Former NBA Champ deems Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland to be the ‘BEST’ backcourt duo

Jalen Brunson leads Knicks to victory against Cavs in Game 1

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Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks in Game 1 (image via Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Jalen Brunson proved to be the hero for the Knicks as they defeated the Cavaliers 101-97 in Game 1 of their series. Despite Donovan Mitchell’s best efforts, the Knicks held on to claim the crucial away win.

Jarrett Allen’s tip-in gave the Cavaliers the lead with over two minutes left, but the Knicks answered with a crucial three-pointer from Josh Hart and a step-back jump shot from Brunson to retake the lead. Brunson shone with 27 points to lead the Knicks.

The Knicks’ Julius Randle made a comeback from injury and scored 19 points with 10 rebounds. The Cavaliers’ Mitchell gave an impressive performance with 38 points, 5 rebounds, 8 assists, and 3 steals. He scored 10 consecutive points in the fourth quarter, leading the Cavs’ comeback.

In the end, the Knicks held on for the win, with Quentin Grimes’ free throws sealing the deal in the final seconds of the game. This was a crucial victory for the Knicks, who will now look to build on their momentum and take a commanding lead in the series.

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