The Cleveland Cavaliers gave up quite a lot to the Utah Jazz in order to being Donovan Mitchell to their team. Nevertheless, it’s still hard not to see the Cavs as the winners of this blockbuster trade considering how they just added a superstar-caliber player that could be the missing piece they have been searching for.
Speaking to Kelsey Russo of The Athletic, Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff had nothing but high praise for Mitchell. The 43-year-old shot-caller talked up what he believes to be one of Mitchell’s best assets — one that he hopes will help take Cleveland to the next level:
“The high level that he can do it every single night,” Bickerstaff told The Athletic. “Like you don’t put up the numbers that he’s put up and not be there every single night and then how that translates to winning. I mean, he’s been in the playoffs every single year that he’s played; his numbers increase in the playoffs. Like that’s not an easy thing to do. And I think that’s what you need to be consistent in this league, and especially one of the elite players.”
As Bickerstaff said, raising your game to a higher level in the postseason is no easy task. While some players tend to see a dip in their production under the bright lights of the playoffs, it’s the exact opposite for Donovan Mitchell. It’s as if the All-Star shooting guard finds another gear in the postseason, and truly, this is one of the things that makes him so special.
It goes without saying that there’s going to be a lot of pressure on Mitchell as he enters his first year with the Cavs. A lot will be expected of him and this new-look Cleveland side. We shall all soon find out if they will be able to live up to all this hype.