Donovan Mitchell said he would not demand a trade from the Jazz, but nothing is stopping team president Danny Ainge from moving the three-time All-Star. On the first day of free agency, the team traded Royce O’Neale to the Nets for a 2023 first-round draft pick. And the front office didn’t extend a qualifying offer to Eric Paschall.
Then, at the beginning of the month, the Jazz traded Rudy Gobert to the Timberwolves for Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Walker Kessler and Jarred Vanderbilt.
Will the Utah Jazz Trade Donovan Mitchell?
Jazz G.M. Justin Zanik could still trade the guard this offseason. If the price is right, the fifth-year player will be gone. On Nov. 23, 2020, Mitchell signed a multi-year contract extension with Utah worth $163 million.
Last season, he earned $28,103,500. For the 2022-23 season, the guard is set to make $30,351,780. His player option for the 2025-26 season is $37,096,620.
With the Jazz now seemingly listening to offers for Mitchell, we’ll break down three suitable trade partners for the Jazz guard.
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1. Miami Heat
Mitchell has expressed interest in playing for the Heat. According to multiple sources, the Heat would have to trade Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson in order to acquire Mitchell. At most, G.M. Andy Elisburg could offer two first-round draft picks and three pick swaps. But Miami losing Herro would be huge.
Furthermore, Ainge would love to have him. Now, how much does Ainge and Zanik value Herro? That’s the ultimate question. The Jazz have not made it beyond the second round of the playoffs since 2007.
Herro won NBA Sixth Man of the Year this past season. He averaged 20.7 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists per game in the 2021-22 season. Robinson also ranked seventh in made 3-pointers last season (232).
Based on the risk-reward ratio, trading away Herro and Robinson for Mitchell would not improve the Heat’s roster. Unless Ainge throws in notable bench players, such a trade would benefit the Jazz more in the long run.
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2. New York Knicks
Next, the Knicks could pursue Donovan Mitchell in the coming days. Knicks president Leon Rose is the guard’s former agent, and he was spotted at the American Airlines Center during the Jazz-Mavericks first-round playoff series. More importantly, the team has all the right pieces to interest Ainge in a potential Mitchell trade. The Knicks can offer the Jazz the following players: RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, Quentin Grimes and Obi Toppin.
Ainge’s demands are high, but the Knicks are starting to look like a different team. Last season, Mitchell averaged 44.8% shooting from the field and 35.5% from 3-point range. Also, he finished 10th in total points (1,733), ninth in points per game (25.9), 15th in steals (99), 11th in steals per game (1.5), 11th in made field goals (617) and seventh in made 3-point field goals (232).
While the Knicks might not become an immediate playoff contender with Jalen Brunson and Donovan Mitchell, they’ll be in a good spot with Julius Randle, Mitchell Robinson and Evan Fournier.
3. Toronto Raptors
Lastly, Mitchell is less likely to end up on the Raptors. However, the guard would benefit Toronto’s backcourt alongside Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. Per multiple sources, Ainge would not only want Khem Birch, OG Anunoby and Thaddeus Young, but he’s also demanding Scottie Barnes. This has “highway robbery” written all over it. Mitchell is one of the top guards in the NBA, but Barnes just won Rookie of the Year.
In the 2021-22 season, he averaged 15.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.1 steals per game. All things considered, Masi Ujiri would be taking a big gamble in such a risky trade. Mitchell turns 26 in September. Although the guard is still young, giving up Anunoby, Barnes and Trent Jr. to acquire him is a bit much. What if he sustains a season-ending injury next season?
For Mitchell’s notable performances, on Nov. 6, in the Jazz’s 118-115 loss versus the Heat, he closed out his performance with 37 points and 7 assists in 37 minutes played. Then, in the Jazz’s 120-108 win over the Timberwolves on Dec. 31, Mitchell scored a season-high 39 points in 38 minutes of action.
During the 2022 NBA Playoffs, Mitchell averaged 25.5 points, 4.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game in the Jazz’s first-round series against the Mavericks. In Game 1, the guard ended his outing with 32 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists in his team’s 99-93 win. Other articles related to Donovan Mitchell are on the main page.
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