Cavs use late surge to win stop Knicks 121-108
Fifth straight win 
            BY TIM SHIRER
(CLEVELAND, OH) - Sunday night the Cleveland Cavaliers (4-1) welcomed the New York Knicks (3-2) to Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse. The Knicks entered the game winless on the road at 0-2 while the Cavs came in 2-0 at home. The Cavs entered the game with a four-game winning streak. They have won each of the four games by at least nine points. The extended the win streak to five on Sunday by catching fire in the final half of the fourth quarter to come from behind to send the New Yorkers home with a 121-108 loss.

The first quarter was a back-and-forth affair as the Cavs got out early 5-0 and then the Knicks scored the next ten points to take a 10-5 lead with 8:53 remaining in the period when Evan Fournier hit a three pointer on a fast break. The Cavs then retaliated with their own 11-1 run led by who else but Donovan Mitchell. Mitchell had two threes in the run and Dean Wade had another to cap the run at the 6:34 mark giving the Cavs a 16-11 lead. The Cavs extended their lead to 30-20 with 3:21 left in the first when Mitchell hit his fifth 3-point basket of the period. The Knicks came all the way back to tie the game at 303-30 with :54 left on the clock when Cam Reddish drained a 3-point basket. Kevin Love then outscored the Knicks 5-0 in the final :38 to give the Cavs a 35-30 lead at the end of one.

Mitchell led all scorers in the first quarter with 15 points. Wade also chipped in 10 for Cleveland. RJ Barrett set the pace for the Knicks with eight points. The Cavs however were outrebounded by the Knicks 11-9. Along with his 15 points Mitchell had five assists.

The second quarter started with a little bit of physical play and a couple questionable calls on the Cavs Raul Neto. Some words may have been exchanged between Neto and New York’s Immanuel Quickley because Neto was separated from him by Love after a foul was called on Neto. The Cavs could not pull away for most of the quarter as eight points was their largest lead and that came at the 4:05 mark when Isaac Okoro hit two free throws to give Cleveland a 55-47 lead. The Kicks cut the lead to three several times in the second. The Cavs once again extended the lead to eight points with 1:35 left when Mitchell hit two free throws and give the Cavs a 62-54 lead. The Knick were not going away as they scored the final five points of the half to cut the Cavs lead to 62-59 at the first half buzzer.

Love led all scorers in the quarter with 10 points and Mitchell led all scorers in the first half with 19 points. Barrett ked the Knicks in the first half with 11 points. The Knicks did win the battle of the boards in the first half with 26-22. The difference in the game was from the three-point lines as the Cleveland hit 12 and the Knicks were only able to drain seven.

The Knicks cut the lead to one at 64-63 just 1:07 into the second half on a jump shot from Jalen Brunson who was a non-factor in the first half with only two points. The Knicks then took a 65-64 lead at the 9:48 mark when Mitchell Robinson laid the ball into the hoop. The Cavs tied the game 65-65 when Fournier was called for a technical and Caris LeVert hit the free shot. The Knicks came right back to take the lead on their next possession when Brunson laid the ball in giving New York a 67-65 lead with 9:12 left in the third quarter. With 7:37 left in the period the Cavs were ice cold from the field as they were 1 for 8 at that point the Knicks had extended their lead to 73-65. In the next 1:10 the Cavs went on an 8-0 run to tie the game 73-73 with 6:27 left. After the Knicks scored the next four points the Cavs got a big three from Wade with an assist from Mitchell to pull Cleveland to within one point at 77-76 with 4:14 left in the third. With 2:59 left the Knicks extended their lead even further to seven points when Fournier hit a three giving New York a 85-78 lead. With 1:45 left Mitchell drove the lane and forcefully slammed the ball with his right hand cutting the lead to 85-80. The third quarter finally ended with the damage done as the Knicks outscored the Cavs 34-22 to lead 93-84. The Cavs shot a miserable 29% (7-24) from the field in the quarter. Brunson led all scores with 12 for the Knicks. Mitchell led the Cavs with seven points. The Cavs shot 20% from three-point range in the period compared to shooting 54.5% in the first half from long range. The Knicks also out hustled the Cavs outrebounding them 15-7 in the period.

With 9:50 left on the game clock Love hit a three pointer to pull the Cavs to within six at 93-87. After Knicks basket Mitchell slammed home a dunk pulling the Cavs to within 95-8 with 9:21 left. The Knicks called a timeout as the felt the momentum shifting. After the time out Love hit a three to close the Knicks lead to 95-92. After the Knicks moved the lead to 99-92 Love hit another 3 pointer to cut the lead to 99-94. The Cavs then came all the way back when Mitchell hit a 3-point basket and was fouled. He hit the free throw and tied the game 99-99 with 7:25 left. Mitchell hit one of two free throws with 6:18 left to give the Cavs a 100-99 lead it was their first lead since 10:53 of the third quarter. The Knicks then retook the lead 101-100, but not for long as Love drained a three and was fouled, hit the free throw giving Cleveland a 104-101 lead with 5:20 remaining. Mobley then extended the lead to five when slammed the ball through the cylinder with 4:34 left. Mitchell started the funeral music for the Knicks with another three-point basket with 3:36 left and the Knicks couldn’t recover. From the 7:25 mark of the fourth quarter the Cavs outscored the physical Knicks 24-9. As cold as the Cavs were from the field in the third quarter the switch was turned on in the fourth. They shot 12 for 20 for 60% from the field in the fourth and 8 for 13 from 3-point range for a 62% sealing the 121-108 victory.

Once again Mitchell led all scorers in the game with 38 points. Love finished 29 off the bench. Wade also had 22 points, shooting 6 of 8 from 3-point range. The Cavs also came to life on the boards outrebounding the Knicks 14-4 in the final quarter. Turnovers in the game were a non-factor as both teams turned it over 14 times and both teams benefited by scoring 18 points off the mistakes.

Mitchell has now scored at least 30 points in five of the six games this season. He is now averaging 32 points a game through his first six games as a Cavalier. It seems like it’s only a matter of time before Mitchell breaks LeBron James Cavs record of 57 points in a game which James has held since November 3, 2017, against the Wizards in Washington.

Tonight’s game was the first of four between the two teams this season. They will meet next on December 4th at 6:00 pm in New York.
The Cavs will play next on Wednesday at RMFH against the Boston Celtics at 7:30 pm. The Knicks will also play next on Wednesday at home against the Atlanta Hawks at Madison Square Garden at 7:30 pm. 
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​POSTED 10/30/2022 20:54
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