The Jazz Might Trade Donovan Mitchell. Why Would They Do That?
Looking into the Futures of Mitchell and the Jazz
Brian Windhorst’s philosopher-like tone on “First Take” hinted at major plans for the Utah Jazz. Since that clip — which has received millions of views and variations across the interwebs — the Jazz have doubled down on offseason shakeups, reportedly becoming open to offers for franchise guard Donovan Mitchell days after trading away Rudy Gobert.
After Utah’s repeated postseason disappointments and the Gobert deal, it was only a matter of time before these two options were on the table:
- The Jazz rebuild around Mitchell
- They trade him away too and start fresh
Though many believed Utah would go in the first direction, it’s not unfathomable they are considering the second. After all, would you want to build around your star guard after his young career has been made up of first- and second-round exits? I don’t think so.
That’s why I’m not surprised about Utah listening to trades for Mitchell, despite my claims in a previous article that the Jazz should rebuild around him.
Now, the main questions are: where should he go and, if a suitor is found, who should Utah get in return?
New York Knicks
The Knicks have jumped at the chance to acquire the 25-year-old three-time All Star. After signing Jalen Brunson to a near-max contract, what’s stopping them from pairing him up with Spida in the Big Apple? They have the players and picks to do so, and there could be traction between the two given New York’s abundance of assets.
New York has more than enough combinations of contracts that could equal Mitchell’s $32M salary for next season. Who knows? They might be able to get a deal done without giving up RJ Barrett (see screenshots by me below)!
I couldn’t include Randle and Evan Fournier in the same deal without adding another player from the Jazz. This trade is equally successful without the addition of Obi, so you’re welcome, Knicks fans.
Another potential package from New York, replacing Randle with Fournier and adding pick swaps to the deal.
If you listen closely, you can hear the hearts of every New Yorker shattering into a million pieces (like the backboard whenever Randle takes a three).
The Knicks may have one of the best chances of landing Donovan Mitchell, as they have enough pieces to put together a return that would satisfy Utah’s General Manager, Justin Zanik. However, they’re not the only ones.
The Mitchell-to-Heat rumors began in the early stages of free agency, with Miami making an offer that was undisclosed to the public. Since then, there’s been radio silence from both sides, but with this new development, the Heat also have the potential to pry Donovan away from Utah.
Here are the Heat’s guaranteed contracts for next season (aside from Butler and Adebayo):
The Heat will have a harder time putting together a suitable package for Mitchell, since Victor Oladipo was just re-signed with Bird Rights and cannot be traded until January 15.
However, this could be a starting point for the Heat. Of course, you could trade Kyle Lowry’s $28M salary next to one of Herro, Strus, or Gabe Vincent, but a package similar to the one above may be the key into outbidding New York for Mitchell.
Overall, if the Jazz do decide to move on from Mitchell, they could receive valuable assets that could contribute to a rebuild. Time will tell what direction they are really leaning toward, but for now, all fans can do is hold on for dear life, as this is quickly becoming one wild NBA offseason.