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Cleveland Cavaliers at Boston Celtics: gamethread

Can the Cavs hang with the defending Eastern Conference Champions?

Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

The Cleveland Cavaliers will face their first true test of the season as they head into Bean Town to face the Boston Celtics. Boston last played on Monday in Chicago against the Bulls, where they lost 120-102, their first loss of the season. Cleveland last played at home against the Orlando Magic, where they won 103-92.

Darius Garland won’t make his return to the floor due to an eye injury he suffered in the season opener against the Toronto Raptors. Getting Garland back would have been a much-needed shot in the arm for the Cavaliers offensively as both Garland and Donovan Mitchell could try to attack the Celtics in a myriad of ways. Perhaps Sunday against the New York Knicks will be Garland’s return to the court, goggles included.

Unfortunately, Boston having extra rest could make this even more difficult for Cleveland if they don’t get off on the right foot early. But, so much time in between games for the Celtics could also play in the Cavaliers’ favor as well. If Cleveland is able to get out fast and use their youth and athleticism, it should be a closer contest.

Either way, it’s going to be a fun matchup between one of the league’s up-and-coming teams and the defending Eastern Conference Champions. If the Cavaliers want to show they’re legit already, a win against the Celtics would certainly set things in motion.