Cleveland Cavaliers Guard Donovan Mitchell Goes Off in Return to Utah

In his first game back in his former home arena, Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell gave Utah Jazz fans a night to remember. The one-time Jazz star exploded for 46 points on 14-27 field goal attempts, five rebounds, six assists, and three steals in a narrow 116-114 loss.

Mitchell played for the Jazz for five seasons after being drafted by the team 13th overall in 2017; he scored 25.3 points per game over three All Star seasons from 2020 to 2022. Their relationship peaked in the 2020-21 season with a 52-20 record and a Western Conference semi-finals appearance. In a blockbuster move, the Jazz traded Mitchell to the Cavaliers prior to the 2022-23 season.

Mitchell is off to a hot start in 2023; he scored a franchise-record 71 points in the first game of the new year and is averaging 39.8 points per game over his last four appearances. His acquisition this offseason has lifted the Cavaliers back to relevance in the Eastern Conference; they sport a 26-16 record this season largely due to his team-leading 29.3 points per game at a career-high .632 true shooting percentage.

The Cleveland Cavaliers will travel to Portland to face the Blazers Thursday night.

Photo Credit: © Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports