2. The backcourt duo of Darius Garland and Donovan Mitchell
When Collin Sexton suffered a season-ending meniscus injury just 11 games into last season, that left Darius Garland as the Cavs lone main facilitator and scorer on a nightly basis. Garland was up to the task — 21.7 points and 8.6 assists a night — and he blossomed into a first-time All-Star and one of the league’s most improved players. Now he gets the benefit of having Donovan Mitchell by his side to help shoulder the load.
D. Mitch is a professional scorer. He’s been over 23.8 points per game for four straight seasons. He was previously the key cog in the Utah Jazz offense, the No. 1 most-efficient offense in the league a year ago. Mitchell’s drive-and-kick game is strong. He has elite speed and bounce.
More than the numbers (which are indeed nice), it’s the mentality and attitude of these two that should really make this backcourt something special. It’s the joy and the fire that they play the game with that should keep you coming back for more.
Critics will point to the undersizedness of a Garland-Mitchell backcourt, but those concerns are highly mitigated with Mobley and Allen prowling the paint behind them.