It’s never an easy assignment to try to contain Cleveland Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell. Detroit Pistons guard Killian Hayes found out about that Saturday night the hard way, as he was sent tumbling to the ground with a morale-melting crossover move by Mitchell, who also drained the bucket from deep just to add more insult to injury.
Donovan Mitchell SNAPS the ankles of Killian Hayes and hits the three 😳 pic.twitter.com/m7nHFk1CpM
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) March 5, 2023
It was actually a great decision by Hayes to pick up Donovan Mitchell right away because opposing teams don’t really want Mitchell to get any space, given how excellent of a playmaker he is with the ball. And all it took for Mitchell to get the space Hayes tried to deny him was a little dribble to the right and a step back off.
Hayes was also just caught in a pick-your-poison scenario there. Donovan Mitchell could take the ball to the rack if his path was not blocked by Hayes.
How the play was set up by Darius Garland was perfect. Garland dribbled to the left which got Hayes’ attention before giving the ball to Mitchell, who got a light screen from Jarrett Allen.
With Donovan Mitchell, defenses are constantly on their feet guessing how to stop him from taking over offensively.
Donovan Mitchell entered the Pistons game averaging 27.5 points per game on 48.1 percent shooting from the field and 38.7 percent from behind the arc this season for a Cavaliers team that has rapidly become a force to reckon with not just in the Eastern Conference but in the entire NBA as well.