Darius Garland Says Confidence at ‘All-Time High’ After Career Night

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Amidst a challenging rookie season, Darius Garland may be starting to find his NBA game.

He dealt a career-high eight assists in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ 109-106 loss to the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday while committing just one turnover.

He also contributed 14 points and five rebounds in the contest.

“All-time high right now,” Garland responded when asked where his confidence level is at. “I think I’ve been playing well. My teammates have been really confident in me, so now I just have to bring it to the court.”

Although he was averaging 11.3 points a game on just 40.1 percent field-goal shooting on the season coming into Thursday’s contest, he’s been starting to pick it up recently.

In December he put up 12.2 points a game while shooting 43.4 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from three-point range.

“The game is definitely slowing down for me, making my reads (is getting) easier,” Garland said. “A lot of people are starting to go over on screens now, so it’s just starting to make it a lot easier.”

After dropping 14 out of 15 games through much of November and December, the Cavs have shown a little bit of spark lately.

They won five out of eight games heading into New Year’s Eve and will have a relatively manageable schedule for much of January.

Little by little, Garland has been showing potential as a floor general and playmaker for his teammates.

Cavs head coach John Beilein has praised his improvement as a lead guard while emphasizing the importance of the rookie’s assist-to-turnover ratio.

“I don’t know why, it’s just the stat I look at,” Beilein said. “And for him to do that (minimize turnovers), it’s a big step in the right direction. He’s got that ability to really score from deep, but at the same time, he’s really seeing his teammates well.”

Hopefully the new year brings nothing but further success for the promising player.

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Robert is a native of Santa Monica, Calif. and a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has been an avid NBA fan since he was a little kid in the mid '90s and has seen the Cavs go from NBA laughingstocks, to contenders, back to laughingstocks and finally world champions. He feels strongly that the NBA and sports aren't just entertainment, but also a means for learning life lessons.