After being one of the league’s biggest upsets for most of the regular season, Darius Garland and the Cleveland Cavaliers saw their campaign unravel in the Play-In tournament. The Cavs were a top 4 team in the East for an extended period, but in the end, they didn’t even make the playoffs.
In an interview with GQ reporters Tyler R. Tynes, Garland described the most painful part of the season for him. The fact that the Cavs made it to the qualifying tournament but still lost their playoff spot was bad timing for the 22-year-old.
“I was gaining experience and I didn’t want the season to end. Being there, feeling the playoff experience, that atmosphere with the whole city behind you. You could barely hear anything in the pavilion, it was on all the time. In Brooklyn and in the second game against Atlanta at home. It was probably the most intense basketball I’ve ever had in my life. It was great to have that experience, but I definitely wanted to make the playoffs,» said a disappointed Garland.
The good news for Garland and the Cleveland team is that the loss has only made them hungrier. He will definitely return next season with a backpack of experience on his back. He’s already tasted the intensity of playing beyond the regular season and will do whatever it takes to make this an annual event for his Cavaliers.
(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)