Cleveland Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell played the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the NBA bubble playoffs back in 2020 when he was still a member of the Utah Jazz. Mitchell averaged 36.3 points per game for the series, but it wasn't enough for the Jazz to advance, as the Nuggets won the series in seven games.
Recently, Mitchell hopped on the Tidal League's Run Your Race podcast and explained the key difference between the Nuggets from the 2020 bubble run and the current iteration of the team, per a tweet from ClutchPoints' official Twitter account:
“They got more versatility… [Nikola Jokic] being up on the pick & roll changed it… They got a lot of pieces, that's the thing.”
"They got more versatility… [Nikola Jokic] being up on the pick & roll changed it… They got a lot of pieces, that's the thing."
Donovan Mitchell on the difference between the present-day Nuggets and the one he faced in the Bubble.
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) June 3, 2023
Donovan Mitchell, 26, has played six years in the NBA, five with the Jazz and one with the Cavaliers. He averaged 28.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.5 steals, 0.4 blocks, 2.6 turnovers, and 2.5 personal fouls per game across 68 appearances this season (all starts).
The former Louisville star shot the ball with great efficiency from behind the three-point arc in the 2022-23 campaign — Mitchell's 38.6% three-point percentage was tied for the highest of his pro career.
Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets are clearly a better team than they were three years ago. They're only three wins away from a championship and just recently swept the Los Angeles Lakers — the team that eliminated them in the 2020 playoffs — in the Western Conference Finals. Here's to hoping that the Denver Nuggets can finish the job and win their first NBA championship in franchise history.