The Jazz are reportedly open to listening to trade inquiries on Donovan Mitchell, but that doesn’t mean they’re shopping the All-Star guard or that he’s likely to be moved this offseason, according to reports from Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report and Tony Jones of The Athletic.
Both Fischer and Jones say the Jazz remain focused on keeping Mitchell and building around him, but would consider changing their stance if they get a significant enough trade offer. Fischer suggests such an offer would have to “rival or even surpass” what Utah got for Rudy Gobert.
The front office has been in constant contact with Mitchell’s representatives, according to Jones, who says those conversations have been positive and the 25-year-old hasn’t asked to be dealt. However, Jones acknowledges that the Jazz will likely take a step back in 2022/23 after moving Gobert, and Mitchell “wants to win at a high level,” so the team’s next moves will be crucial.
Fischer likens the situation to James Harden‘s final year in Houston, when the Rockets rebuffed trade offers for P.J. Tucker and made moves to try to convince Harden to stick around, only to see him eventually request a trade. That doesn’t mean Mitchell will take the same path, but some executives around the league believe he and the Jazz are headed for a break-up, whether it happens this offseason or in a year or two.
Although Jones says several other teams have made “serious overtures,” the Knicks have long been viewed as one of the primary suitors for Mitchell. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said during an appearance on Get Up (video link) that “some people” view it as inevitable that the former lottery pick will ultimately end up in New York.
“New York can offer some combination of multiple picks, RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin and Immanuel Quickley, and that’s probably the benchmark any team is going to have to beat in order to get Donovan Mitchell from the Jazz,” an assistant general manager told Bleacher Report.
The Heat have also been frequently linked to Mitchell, but Andy Larsen of The Salt Lake Tribune says Miami made an offer for the former Louisville standout earlier in the offseason and the Jazz found it “insufficient.”
According to Fischer, who polled about two dozen executives in Las Vegas, Barrett has more trade value than Tyler Herro, Miami’s most logical trade centerpiece, though it’s unclear whether Utah has serious interest in either player — both are expected to be seeking maximum-salary (or near-max) extensions that would begin in 2023/24.
Here’s more on the Jazz:
- The Jazz have explored a potential sign-and-trade deal for Collin Sexton that would send Mike Conley to Cleveland, sources tell Bleacher Report. However, Fischer admits that Conley may not fit the Cavaliers‘ roster and suggests that if those talks gain serious traction, another Utah player would probably have to be involved. Conley did generate some interest from the Clippers before they signed John Wall, Fischer adds, but it’s trickier to find a logical landing spot for him at this point.
- Leading up to the June 23 draft, the Jazz were looking for first-round picks in the 15-to-25 range for Conley, Bojan Bogdanovic, or Royce O’Neale, Fischer reports. The team ended up moving O’Neale for a 2023 first-rounder.
- All of the players the Jazz acquired from Minnesota in the Gobert trade are considered available, Fischer says. “They are open to moving everyone,” one assistant GM told Bleacher Report.
- Jarred Vanderbilt and Patrick Beverley are among the players from that Gobert trade who have drawn interest, per Fischer. Sources tell Bleacher Report that the Lakers and Heat are a couple of the teams with some interest in Beverley.