Donovan Mitchell's future with the Utah Jazz is uncertain, and it appears a number of teams have been gearing up to attempt to acquire the veteran guard.
"Other teams have been planning to make a run at Donovan Mitchell all season long," ESPN's Tim McMahon said on The Lowe Post podcast (1-hour, 23-minute mark).
Rumors surrounding Mitchell's future in Utah date back to last year. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported on the Hoops Collective podcast that Jazz minority owner Dwyane Wade was concerned Mitchell wouldn't want to stay with the team.
One of the teams looking to make a run at Mitchell could be the Knicks. An Eastern Conference scout told Ric Bucher of Fox Sports in January that the Jazz were "a first-round exit from Donovan being in New York."
It's unclear if Mitchell would be open to playing for the Knicks, but he did grow up in New York, and MacMahon reported on the Hoops Collective podcast in January that "market size might matter to him."
If that truly matters to Mitchell, the Knicks are atop the list. Playing in New York City alone is enticing, and according to Forbes, the franchise is worth $5.8 billion, which is first in the NBA.
However, Mitchell told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports in February that he had no intention of leaving the Jazz. Since then, though, things haven't gone to plan in Utah.
After finishing first in the Western Conference last year and reaching the conference semifinals, the Jazz sit in fifth place with a 46-31 record. While that's respectable, the team appears to be far from competing with the Phoenix Suns.
And, after the Jazz blew a 25-point lead to the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday and lost 121-115, Mitchell expressed his frustration with not only his performance, but also the team's.
“I don’t know. It’s the same s--t,” Mitchell told reporters. “I don’t know, it feels the same way. It’s the same thing; it’s literally the same thing. I had six turnovers, turned the ball over too much, we didn’t get back on defense, we didn’t rebound. I don’t know, I don’t have anything for you right now.”
If the Jazz don't make a deep playoff run, it certainly seems like Mitchell could be on the move. The 25-year-old has four years remaining on his five-year, $163 million deal that includes a player option for the 2025-26 season.