Don’t worry, jazz lovers. Your favorite All-Star goalkeeper is in good spirits.
In the final seconds of Utah’s 117-111 win over the Los Angeles Clippers Thursday night, Donovan Mitchell ran toward Joe England looking to control the ball. Before he reached Engels, Mitchell collided with Paul George and quickly reached down toward his right leg.
Mitchell’s teammates helped him off the field, but Mitchell didn’t immediately seem comfortable putting a weight on that leg. ESPN side reporter Cassidy Hobarth tweeted That Mitchell later had a “visible limp” as he walked into the locker room.
As ESPN analyst Doris Burke noted on the broadcast, the obvious concern was that Mitchell had somehow re-injured his right ankle. The 24-year-old has missed the Jazz’s last 16 regular season games and the first game of the team’s first-round series against the Grizzlies while recovering from a right ankle sprain.
During his media availability after the match, Mitchell tried to allay any concerns about his health.
“I got hit, and I got hurt. But I’m fine now,” Mitchell said. “I got in here. If you want me to run for you, I can. I’m good. I think the biggest thing, you know, s-happens. I’m grateful it wasn’t bad. Go ahead and get ready for game 3.”
This is good news for the Jazz because they can’t afford to lose Mitchell. They are now 6-0 in the postseason when Mitchell is available; Their only loss in the game came in that opener of the first round he missed. He scored 37 points in Game 2, making him the first Utah player to score at least 35 points in consecutive games since Karl Malone did it in 1988, According to ESPN statistics and information.
If Mitchell was still feeling any pain from the blow, he wouldn’t have much recovery time. Utah will head to Los Angeles for a pivotal Match 3 game on Saturday.