Darius Garland leads Cavs to win over Magic to end five-game losing streak

Brian Dulik
The Associated Press
Cavaliers guard Darius Garland (10) shoots over the Orlando Magic's Robin Lopez (33) during the Cavs' 105-92 win Saturday night. Garland led the Cavs with 26 points. [Tony Dejak/Associated Press]

CLEVELAND — Darius Garland scored a season-high 26 points, rookie Evan Mobley had 13 points in his return from a sprained right elbow and the Cavaliers beat the Orlando Magic 105-92 on Saturday night.

Mobley missed four games after getting entangled with Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter on Nov. 15. The No. 3 overall selection had nine rebounds, three assists and four blocked shots, helping the Cavs end their longest losing streak of the season at five.

Garland added 11 assists, Lauri Markkanen scored 20 points, and Jarrett Allen had 19 points and 11 rebounds. Cedi Osman scored 10 points off the bench as the Cavs (10-10) wrapped up a four-game homestand.

“It was great being back out there with J.A., Lauri and the guys again,” said Mobley, who is averaging 14.5 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.8 blocked shots. “Our chemistry gets better every game. I missed a couple of shots early, but I felt good tonight.”

Wendell Carter Jr. led the Magic with 19 points and 11 rebounds before being ejected with 2:09 left. Robin Lopez had 13 points and Gary Harris scored 11 for the Magic, who have the worst record in the East at 4-17 and dropped their sixth in a row.

Cavaliers forward Lauri Markkanen (24) looks to pass against the Orlando Magic's Chuma Okeke (3) during the Cavs' 105-92 win Saturday night in Cleveland. Markkanen scored 20 points for the Cavs. [Tony Dejak/Associated Press]

Neither team led by more than seven until the Cavaliers opened the third quarter with an 11-3 run fueled by two 3-pointers by Markkanen to go ahead 65-52. The Cavs put the game away midway through the fourth when Mobley nailed a 3-pointer to make it 91-75.

“It means everything to have him back because Evan wants to be great,” Garland said. “That’s why he always puts in the work. He brings a lot to the team with the way he blocks shots, grabs rebounds and, of course, his dunking.”

Franz Wagner, the eighth overall selection, had 12 points, eight boards and four assists for the Magic, which didn’t attempt a free throw until 39 seconds remained in the second. Fifth pick Jalen Suggs had 10 points and made four steals, and Gary Harris scored 11.

Magic point guard Cole Anthony, who is averaging 19.6 points and 5.9 assists, missed his fifth consecutive game with a sprained right ankle. Terrence Ross played 11 minutes before exiting with lower back discomfort.

“There are no excuses, but the guys we had out there gave it everything they had,” Magic coach Jamahl Mosley said. “Cleveland did an outstanding job and stayed in attack mode the entire game.”

The Cavs had lost seven in a row to the Magic and beat the Magic for the first time since March 3, 2019.

“Evan came back and impacted the game at both ends of the floor,” Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. “He makes everyone feel safe because he and Jarrett are two of the best rim-protecting bigs in the league.”

All work, no play

Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff was impressed with rookie Mobley’s work ethic while he was sidelined, noting that the 20-year-old post player did not miss a practice. “Evan didn’t take any days off when he got hurt, which tells you something,” Bickerstaff said. “The first few days, he just did everything with his left hand because he wanted to be out there with his teammates.”


Magic: Center Mo Bamba (lower back spasms) was a late scratch. … Center Jonathan Isaac (left knee), guard Markelle Fultz (left knee) and guard Michael Carter-Williams (left ankle) have yet to play this season as they recover from surgeries on torn ligaments. Guard E’Twaun Moore (left knee sprain) also has not appeared in a game. … Magic coach Jamahl Mosley was a Cavs assistant from 2010-2014 under Byron Scott and Mike Brown.

Cavaliers: Forward Lamar Stevens (right ankle sprain) played for the first time since Nov. 12 against the Detroit Pistons. … Forward Dean Wade (left calf strain), who has started 11 games, was inactive after being hurt Wednesday against the Phoenix Suns. … Guard Collin Sexton (left knee surgery) will miss the rest of the season after having a torn meniscus repaired on Nov. 17. … Center Tacko Fall and guard RJ Nembhard, both two-way players, are on G League assignments.

Cavaliers at Heat

Time: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday

TV: Bally Sports Ohio