One NBA executive recently weighed in on the trade.
“The Donovan Mitchell trade changed everything, at least in terms of raising expectations,” wrote Terry Pluto of Cleveland.com. “As one NBA executive told me, ‘Cleveland took a big swing with that trade, and I’d have done the same thing. There are times when you know you’re giving up a lot, but you do it. You seize the moment.'”
It still remains to be seen how much the Cavs have improved because of the addition of the three-time All-Star. However, the organization and its fans are optimistic that Mitchell is the player who can help the franchise get over the hump.
Last season, Cleveland barely missed the playoffs. After finishing the regular season with a 44-38 record and the No. 8 seed in the East, the squad needed to win one game in the play-in tournament to reach the playoffs. Unfortunately, the Cavs lost to the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks by an average of 6.5 points per game in the play-in.
Mitchell seems to be just what the doctor ordered for the team. He has career averages of 23.9 points, 4.5 assists and 4.2 rebounds per contest.
The University of Louisville product has also shown an ability to turn it up in the playoffs. He has averaged 28.3 points, 4.7 dimes and 4.9 rebounds per game in five trips to the postseason (39 games).
Cavs All-Star Darius Garland will now have a reliable backcourt partner who can keep defenses honest. The 22-year-old point guard has gushed about his new teammate, calling him an “ultimate scorer.”
"He's just like an ultimate scorer"
Darius Garland on what Donovan Mitchell brings to the Cavs offense.
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) October 8, 2022
Preseason games allowed Mitchell to adjust to playing with his new squad. After all, he spent the first five years of his career with the Utah Jazz.
Fortunately, it seems that he may be able to easily develop chemistry with some of his new teammates, such as Jarrett Allen. Mitchell even explained why he believes his collaboration with the Cavs big man will be easier to start than the one he shared with former Jazz center Rudy Gobert.
Cavs fans will get to see how the new-look roster performs when the team opens its season on Oct. 19 against the Toronto Raptors. That match will be played on the road. The Cavs’ first home game will be on Oct. 23 against the Washington Wizards.