Jazz news: Donovan Mitchell reacts to Royce O'Neale's extension
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Jazz star Donovan Mitchell reacts to Royce O’Neale’s extension

Jazz, Donovan Mitchell, Royce O'Neale

Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell was happy to learn that his friend and teammate, Royce O’Neale, was awarded with a four-year, $36 million contract extension over the weekend.

While speaking to members of the media at Monday morning’s shootaround, Mitchell noted that O’Neale is deserving of his extension from the Jazz:

“It’s great to see great things happen to great people,” Donovan Mitchell said of O’Neale. “We all know the worker he is, the time and effort he puts in. You guys have seen the effort, you guys have seen the results.

“This isn’t it for him,” Mitchell added, referring to O’Neale. “It’s not like he got his money and now that’s it. He’s ready. He’s always locked in and ready to go. He never falters and he’s always consistent, which I respect.”

O’Neale, a player who was undrafted out of Baylor, has been a nice story for the Jazz thus far. Now in his third season with the team, he has become a starter who is continuing to progress. He’s averaging career highs in several categories in this campaign, including minutes, points, rebounds and assists. An important piece of Utah’s defensive schemes, O’Neale is often matched up against some of the best players in today’s NBA, yet he is currently holding a 44.3 percent mark from beyond the arc.

“Just the journey of how far I’ve come,” O’Neale said, via ESPN. “I’ve come a long way.”

In his 42 appearances with the Jazz this season (39 starts), O’Neale has racked up averages of 6.2 points on 47.2 percent shooting from the field, 5.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and just under one steal (0.8) in 29.6 minutes per outing.

The Jazz are happy to have Royce O’Neale on a long-term deal. In fact, Jazz executive vice president of basketball operations Dennis Lindsey said the deal was a priority for the organization. Now, with a new paycheck, he’ll look to continue his progression.