The New York Knicks offered the Utah Jazz a package of three players, including RJ Barrett, and three unprotected first-round picks for shooting guard Donovan Mitchell when the two teams began trade talks in July, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski:
Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn
At the start of trade talks in July, New York offered Utah a Donovan Mitchell package including RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin, Mitchell Robinson and three unprotected first-round picks, sources tell ESPN. Jazz turned down that offer and Robinson signed a $60M extension to stay w/ NY. <a href="https://t.co/3eDg2Mf7f1">https://t.co/3eDg2Mf7f1</a>
That obviously did not come to fruition, and Mitchell is now a Cleveland Cavalier after the Cavs engineered a blockbuster trade for the three-time All-Star.
Mitchell, 25, averaged 25.9 points and 5.3 assists per game last year.
The Jazz trading Mitchell to the Cavaliers instead of the Knicks leaves all three teams on completely different paths.
Utah is in full-on rebuilding mode after dealing its two stars in Mitchell and Rudy Gobert for a treasure trove of picks and players.
The Knicks look like they'll be in contention for the playoffs after adding guard Jalen Brunson over the offseason, but adding Mitchell could have given them another boost.
On the other hand, the Knicks won't mortgage their future by going all-in for Mitchell. They can now develop their young players and keep adding to the roster with their own first-round picks. Championship contention doesn't appear on the horizon, but the Knicks at least appear to be going in the right direction for once.
The Cavs may have been a better landing spot for Mitchell regardless. Cleveland made the play-in tournament last year with a 44-38 record. The Cavs have a solid core featuring a pair of All-Stars (Darius Garland and Jarrett Allen), a big man who will be one shortly (Evan Mobley) and a Sixth Man of the Year candidate in Caris LeVert.
Now they'll work with Mitchell, who could very well turn the Cavs into an Eastern Conference title contender.