The Utah Jazz sputtered in Game 1 against the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday night without star guard Donovan Mitchell. Playing without him was not new for Utah, as the All-Star has missed an extended chunk of time that leaked over from the regular season into Game 1 for the Jazz.
As a result, Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies pounced on the opportunity, taking out Utah 112-109 on Sunday night. Following the game, Mitchell tweeted out his reaction:
Sorry y’all… I wish I could say more…. I’ll be out there soon !❤️🙏🏾
— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) May 24, 2021
It was largely believed and reported on that Mitchell would be good to go for the Jazz's opening game in the postseason. But right into the lead-up of the NBA's nightcap on Sunday, reports trickled down that Mitchell would in fact not be suiting up for Utah.
Although Mitchell's tweet would seemingly indicate a return soon to the court, there's still some clear gray area now as to when that'll be. With Utah's sense of urgency ticking up after the Game 1 loss, perhaps Game 2 is a realistic target now for No. 45.
The Jazz in large part had done fine in Mitchell's absence. They were able to hold down the fort enough to keep control of and clinch the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference even without their top offensive star. Bojan Bogdanovic has really started to come into his own with the elevated role on offense, and players like Joe Ingles, Jordan Clarkson and Rudy Gobert have all stepped up without Spida.
Yet the Jazz know, like everyone else, if Utah wants a legitimate shot at the NBA title this year, they will need a healthy Donovan Mitchell in their lineup.