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Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell seen limping in pain after crashing into Paul George

Jazz, Donovan Mitchell, Paul George, Clippers

The Utah Jazz defeated the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night, 117-111 in Game 2 of their second round series, but for a moment it seemed they had lost their shot at the NBA title. Donovan Mitchell was seen limping after a collision with Paul George in the final minute of the game.

The collision was entirely avoidable, and of course, a cutter has the right of way on the court, making George’s interference that much less defensible. Yes, Donovan Mitchell appeared to embellish the contact to a degree, but there’s no dispute that George is clearly in the wrong here, like a car in a traffic accident that violated the rules of the road.

Mitchell suffered an injury late in the regular season which dramatically affected the Jazz’s on-court performance. He missed Game 1 of the first round series against the Memphis Grizzlies, which remains—after Utah’s Game 2 win over the Clippers— the only game Quin Snyder’s team has lost to this point in the playoffs.

Mitchell appeared to be in very bad shape in the first few moments after this collision, but it turned out to be a temporary bit of pain and not a structural injury. The Jazz avoided a pyrrhic victory and will have Mitchell in good health for Game 3 in the weekend in Los Angeles.

Donovan Mitchell is by far the main reason the Jazz are up 2-0 in the series despite missing guard Mike Conley Jr. in each of the first two games against the Clippers.

Mitchell and the Jazz have taken body blows in each of these games. In Game 1, Utah missed 21 straight shots but overcame that dry spell to win. In Game 2, the Jazz lost all of a 21-point lead. The Clippers, fueled by a Reggie Jackson scoring spree, took the lead midway through the fourth quarter. However, Utah’s balance and depth, with Joe Ingles and Bojan Bogdanovic making hugely important plays, carried the top seed to victory.

Donovan Mitchell carried the Jazz in Game 1. He was carried by his teammates late in Game 2—and he survived Paul George’s recklessness at the very end.