Utah Jazz Hangs on to Donovan Mitchell: Trade Talks Put on Hold

The Utah Jazz’s Plan to Keep Donovan Mitchell and Rebuild

The Utah Jazz have made it clear that they have no intention of trading away their star player, Donovan ‘Spida’ Mitchell. Despite rumors of Mitchell wanting to leave the team and potential interest from the New York Knicks, the Jazz are determined to build around their All-Star guard. Mitchell, who grew up near New York City, had sparked hopes among fans that he would join his hometown team and showcase his skills at Madison Square Garden on a regular basis.

However, with the Jazz committed to keeping Mitchell, the Knicks had to explore other options. On draft night, the Knicks made bold moves, exchanging their #11 pick for three future first-round picks from the Oklahoma City Thunder. This trade bolstered their draft capital and flexibility. Nevertheless, it seems that Mitchell is off the table for the Knicks or any other team as the Jazz remain steadfast in their decision.

The Reshaping of the Utah Jazz

The Jazz recently hired Will Hardy as their new head coach. With a rookie coach taking charge, the Jazz face an uphill battle as they aim to compete for the 2023 NBA championship. Currently, they have +10000 odds to win the title, narrowly missing the bottom ten list of long-shot contenders, which includes the Knicks with +15000 odds.

Gobert Departs, Timberwolves Take a Gamble

Rudy Gobert, the Jazz’s big man, wore out his welcome in Utah due to his abrasive personality. His relationship with Mitchell deteriorated, and the tension spilled onto the court, causing friction within the team. In an attempt to address this issue, the Jazz publicly expressed their willingness to trade Gobert. Consequently, the Minnesota Timberwolves capitalized on the opportunity and offered a substantial package, including two starters, bench players, a rookie first-rounder, and four future first-round picks to acquire Gobert, a three-time defensive player of the year.

Despite this trade, the Timberwolves’ odds to win the 2023 NBA championship only saw a slight increase to +3500. The Western Conference remains highly competitive, with teams like the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Memphis Grizzlies, and Phoenix Suns still posing strong challenges. The addition of Gobert undoubtedly boosts the Timberwolves’ defense, but they have a tough road ahead in their pursuit of contention.

Utah Jazz’s Strategy Following Gobert’s Departure

Credit is due to Danny Ainge, who made the crucial decision to part ways with Gobert. Although the Jazz lost an elite defender and top rim protector, they managed to execute a trade that greatly benefited their team. With Gobert gone and Mitchell staying, Ainge now faces the task of assembling a competitive roster or potentially tanking the next season in hopes of securing a high draft pick, such as Victor Wembanyama. Additionally, the Jazz have extra first-round picks that they can potentially utilize to move up in the 2023 NBA Draft.

To fill the vacant head coach position, Ainge made an intriguing choice in Will Hardy, a former assistant coach for the Boston Celtics. At just 34 years old, Hardy becomes the NBA’s youngest active head coach. Although lacking experience, his ties to the Gregg Popovich coaching tree give Ainge confidence that he can translate Hardy’s potential into success, similar to how Sean McVay quickly rose in the NFL coaching ranks.

Brooklyn Nets’ Trade Rumors: Kevin Durant

While the focus remains on the Jazz, another high-profile trade rumor revolves around the Brooklyn Nets and their star player, Kevin Durant. Durant has reportedly asked the Nets for a trade, and given the significant return the Jazz received for Gobert, the Nets are likely expecting a substantial haul for Durant. Widely regarded as one of the best players in the NBA, Durant’s presence can transform an ordinary team into a title contender.

Durant expressed his desire to be traded to either the Phoenix Suns or Miami Heat, both of which offer him an opportunity to contend for another championship. Currently, DraftKings lists the Suns as the favorites to land Durant with +110 odds, followed by the Toronto Raptors at +400 odds and the Miami Heat at +1200 odds. The Raptors, having fewer hurdles to overcome in a potential trade with the Nets, emerge as a strong contender. However, it remains uncertain whether Durant would be open to playing in Canada.

The Utah Jazz also enter the conversation as a potential trade destination for Durant, with +4000 odds. Their acquisition of draft picks in the Gobert trade, including one from the Nets in a separate deal involving Royce O’Neal, provides them with additional assets for potential trades. However, given Durant’s preference to play in desirable locations, a pairing with Mitchell in Salt Lake City seems unlikely.


The Utah Jazz have made it clear that they have no intention of parting ways with Donovan Mitchell. Instead, they have opted to build around their star player and hired Will Hardy, a disciple of coach Popovich, as their new head coach. Although they lost Rudy Gobert, the Jazz received a significant trade package from the Minnesota Timberwolves. Meanwhile, rumors surrounding Kevin Durant’s potential trade continue to circulate, with various teams vying for his services. The next NBA season is shaping up to be an exciting one, with teams maneuvering and reshaping their rosters in hopes of bringing home the championship.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Will Donovan Mitchell be traded in the future?

As it stands, the Utah Jazz have made it clear that they have no intentions of trading Donovan Mitchell. They see him as a cornerstone player for the team’s future and intend to build around him.

2. Why did the Minnesota Timberwolves trade for Rudy Gobert?

The Timberwolves saw an opportunity to acquire a three-time defensive player of the year in Rudy Gobert. They believe that pairing Gobert with Karl-Anthony Towns will create a formidable defensive frontcourt and potentially make them contenders in the Western Conference.

3. Are the Utah Jazz planning to tank next season?

While tanking next season is a possibility for the Utah Jazz, it is not definite. With extra first-round picks from recent trades, they have the flexibility to either build a competitive team or prioritize acquiring high draft picks for future seasons.

4. What are the odds of Kevin Durant being traded?

The odds of Kevin Durant being traded are uncertain. While he has expressed a desire to join teams like the Phoenix Suns or Miami Heat, the specific details of any potential trade remain unknown. Various factors, such as the offers teams present and Durant’s own preferences, will determine the outcome.

5. Can the Utah Jazz contend for a championship without Rudy Gobert?

The Jazz face increased challenges without Rudy Gobert’s elite defense and rim protection. However, with Donovan Mitchell and the additional draft picks they acquired, they have the potential to restructure their team and remain competitive in the demanding Western Conference.

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Doug I. Jones

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