What is the best team to fit around Donovan Mitchell? I mean, the Utah Jazz are a talented ball club, as they are one of the top four squads in the Western Conference. Like with most teams though, there are always some chemistry issues. The NBA being canceled was partly because Jazz center Rudy Gobert didn’t take coronavirus seriously.
Mitchell didn’t take this well even though reports say he and Gobert are now cool. Hypothetically, let’s go into a fantasy mode where we build the best team to fit around Donovan Mitchell (with him still being in Utah). My rule on this is that Mitchell has to stay as the best player on the Jazz. So, let’s get into this!
PG: Ja Morant
My pick for point guard would be Ja Morant. Ja had an amazing rookie season which will probably land him Rookie of the Year honors. He has led a Memphis team that wasn’t supposed to do much this year to a possible playoff berth. At only 21-years-old, this would be the perfect point guard to put across from Mitchell. You would have the most athletic backcourt and both are still very young (Mitchell will be 24 in September). Ja would also be the main ball handler, which would keep the ball out of the Jazz guard’s hands and let him do what he does best, which is drive.
SG: Donovan Mitchell
We now look at the guy whom the whole article is about, the future of the Jazz, Spida Mitchell. He wasn’t projected to be the guy when the Denver Nuggets selected him with the 13th pick in 2017 and that’s why they traded him for Trey Lyles. From leading Team USA last summer to being an All-Star, the Louisville product has done a ton in just a few years in the NBA. In addition, from being the dunk champion at All-Star Weekend in 2018 to now being one of the faces of Adidas, this man has a bright future. At 23- years-old, he is only going to get better.
SF: Brandon Ingram
At small forward, I am going to go to another young player who has taken a big step this year. Brandon Ingram wasn’t even the best young player on the Lakers last season. There was a reason the Lakers pushed so hard to keep Kyle Kuzma, but that all changed this year when Ingram became a leader on the New Orleans Pelicans.
At just 22-years-old, he took over this season while averaging 24.3 PPG. This was a huge improvement from the 18.3 he averaged last season. Ingram now has a chance to let the Pelicans thrive with a young core of Zion Williamson, him, and Lonzo Ball. The Duke product went from being a third option to an All-Star just this year and I feel like he would be a great fit with Mitchell and Ja. This young core would be able to grow together and be a big three before they even entered their primes.
PF: Zion Williamson
Listen, I said anyone worse than Donovan Mitchell RIGHT NOW. Don’t get me wrong, Zion is the future of the league, a superstar in the making. However, add him to this young core, and this deal would be destined for greatness. At almost 20 years of age, the Duke product would fit in perfectly with this young core of Mitchell, Ja, and BI.
They would all grow together, and I also feel like Quin Snyder would be a great coach for all of these guys. Yes, we have no veteran leadership, but that is what the bench is for. Imagine the dunks you would see from this team. Ja, Spida, and Zion would be a must-watch show as they try to one-up each other every night, and as I said, it’s all a fantasy.
C: Kristaps Porzingis
With how small our lineup is, we need some height and scoring. Kristaps brings both. At 7’3″, he is one of the tallest centers in the league, and this would help the lineup since Mitchell and Zion are both undersized for their positions. The big man would also bring a deep ball threat. You can trust Ingram and Porzingis to just be the shooters of the team and the other three could do what they do best which is finish at the rim. Another plus of Porzingis is his age. He will turn 25 in August, which fits the timetable of this team.
Yes, I know this team is completely made-up and could never happen, but it would be very fun to see how it would work together. I feel like all these players complement each other and they all can thrive off each other’s weaknesses, so it feels like this is the best team to fit around Donovan Mitchell.
All stats come from: https://www.basketball-reference.com/players/i/ingrabr01.html