Cavaliers Beat the Magic 104-103: Playoff Game Recap Game 5 / Round 1

April 30, 2024

Andy Billman

Post-Game Recap

3 Notes Around the Victory


With five seconds left, Evan Mobley made an enormous block on Franz Wagner’s layup to keep the game at 100-102.

Donovan Mitchell made two free throws to put the game away for good, but it would not have been possible without Mobley’s block on Wagner. 

2 – STRUS!

Max Strus finally had his breakout game, scoring 16 and eight straight points in the third quarter.

3 – Morris 

Marcus Morris Sr. was huge off the bench scoring twelve points with three rebounds and playing key minutes.

Game Recap

Donovan Mitchell notched 28 points, Evan Mobley thwarted Franz Wagner’s layup attempt in the dying seconds, and the Cleveland Cavaliers narrowly escaped Orlando’s grasp, edging out Paolo Banchero and the Magic 104-103 in Game 5 on Tuesday night to seize a 3-2 advantage in their Eastern Conference series.

Rebounding from their recent defeats in Orlando, where they suffered humiliation at the hands of the Magic, the Cavs rallied within the electrifying confines of Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. It was a battle of wills, and they summoned every ounce of determination.

With just 15.7 seconds remaining, Mitchell’s jumper fell short, setting the stage for Wagner’s potentially game-tying drive. However, Mobley rose to the occasion, emphatically swatting away Wagner’s layup attempt with a crucial block at the rim, deflecting the ball off the backboard with only 6 seconds left.

Securing possession, Mitchell was fouled and calmly sank two free throws with 3.2 seconds on the clock, extending the Cavs’ lead to 104-100. Despite a last-second 3-pointer from Banchero, who amassed an impressive 39 points, the Magic fell short.

In his fifth postseason appearance, the 21-year-old Banchero displayed the poise of a seasoned veteran, particularly evident with his remarkable 16-point surge in the fourth quarter. He concluded the game shooting 14 of 24 from the field, including 4 of 7 from beyond the arc, while also grabbing eight rebounds.

Despite the absence of starting center Jarrett Allen due to a bruised rib, Cleveland received a significant boost from Max Strus, who delivered 16 points in his standout performance of the series. Mobley contributed 14 points and 13 rebounds, showcasing his versatility, while reserve Marcus Morris Sr. provided Cleveland with grit and contributed 12 points.

Having spent the season aiming to move past last year’s disappointing first-round exit against New York, the Cavs now have an opportunity to advance with a victory in Game 6 on Friday in Orlando.

Meanwhile, the Magic find themselves in a must-win situation to salvage their breakthrough season and extend the series to a decisive Game 7 in Cleveland on Sunday. Despite their regular-season success at home with a 29-12 record, Orlando faces an uphill battle after back-to-back losses at Kia Center.

Mitchell, despite battling a left knee injury, delivered a stellar performance, particularly in the fourth quarter, where he poured in 14 points, primarily from the free-throw line, going 9 of 10.

Up Next

At Orlando Friday, May 3rd TBA

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