The Utah Jazz teared down a couple of vital parts of their roster – but the team isn’t in full-blown rebuild mode just yet. With all the draft capital they’ve accumulated they could go gear up for a roster revamp and build around Donovan Mitchell. But they could just as easily go the other direction if they don’t see him as that level of foundational piece.
Whether or not Mitchell is that level of talent is up for debate. But contenders with other pieces in place could definitely use a star like him to take their franchise to the next level.
Here are the three (3) best landing spots for Donovan Mitchell if the Jazz opt to trade their star:
3 best trade destinations for Donovan Mitchell
New York Knicks
Is New York the best place for Donovan Mitchell to try to win a championship? Definitely not. For as great of a talent that he is, he’s probably not going to be enough to lift the Knicks out of the doldrums that they’ve existed in for the longest time.
But is New York going to embrace Donovan Mitchell like the favorite son they’ve always wanted? 100 percent. Spida was born and raised in New York. He’s constantly tweeting about the Mets and definitely would love to be walking distance from Citi Field.
— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) July 10, 2022
Knicks fans fell head over heels in love with Julius Randle during his All-Star season in 2020-21 but their relationship has since cooled off after his play fell back down to earth last season.
But Mitchell is a proven three-time All-Star talent who at 25 years old is right at the cusp of his prime years in the NBA. He’s the born and bred New Yorker at point that they were hoping to see from Kemba Walker, except at the exact point of his career that they wanted him to be in a Knicks uniform.
If we’re talking basketball situation, the Knicks don’t hold a candle to the Miami Heat as a potential landing spot for Donovan Mitchell. Whatever the package it is that gets sent back to Utah in a hypothetical exchange, it definitely won’t be including Bam Adebayo or Jimmy Butler.
Those three along with a top three NBA mind in Erik Spoelstra running the show could become the favorites in a top-heavy Eastern Conference that continues to get better and better.
Mitchell may not be a defensive stalwart, but he doesn’t have to be that when his co-stars are two of the best defenders at their respective positions. Plus, it’s not like he’s much of a defensive downgrade from Tyler Herro or a bogged down Kyle Lowry on that end.
It’s a brilliant situation for him to win now while also being a prime location for him to take over as the franchise guy in the next few years. Jimmy Butler is the guy right now, but he’ll also be turning 33 once next season rolls around. Meanwhile, Mitchell’s 2017 draft classmate in Adebayo is even younger than him and can be his partner in crime for the rest of his prime.
Plus with the beach scene and lack of state income tax adding, Miami as a destination is one of the best in the league.
While forming a tandem with Bam Adebayo would certainly be tantalizing on its own, forming one with Nikola Jokic would downright amazing for Donovan Mitchell.
One of the knocks on questions on Mitchell has always been about whether he was a true point guard or if he’d actually be better playing off somebody else. Jazz fans got a glimpse of the off-ball Mitchell when Mike Conley Jr. had his All-Star season in 2021, but he’s never played with an elite playmaker yet. Jokic is arguably the best playmaker in the league right now.
Playing alongside the Joker could unlike an entirely new dimension in Mitchell’s game. While Jamal Murray has excelled playing off him, he’s no All-Star and hasn’t shown the consistency that Mitchell has in playing at a high level. The hard cuts to the rim will be coming in hot and heavy for Spida with Jokic finding him everywhere on the court. After a half decade of carrying the offensive load in Utah, he’ll be having buckets served on a silver plater for him in Denver.