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Donovan Mitchell Trade Presented Cavs with 'Incredible Opportunity,' Koby Altman Says

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 3, 2022

AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

The Cleveland Cavaliers officially announced their acquisition of All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell on Saturday, and president of basketball operations Koby Altman said in the team's statement it was an opportunity they couldn't pass on.

"The acquisition of Donovan Mitchell presented us with an incredible opportunity to bring one of the NBA's most dynamic young All-Stars to Cleveland," he said. "Already a special and proven talent at just 25 years old, Donovan brings a competitive mentality that organically fits with the core group of this team. We are excited to see the impact that someone of Donovan's caliber can bring to the Cavaliers with his ability to score the basketball, but also make plays for his teammates. We welcome Donovan and his entire family to Northeast Ohio."

In exchange for Mitchell, the Cavs sent the Utah Jazz Collin Sexton, Lauri Markkanen, Ochai Agbaji, unprotected first-round picks in 2025, 2027 and 2029, and first-round pick-swap rights in 2026 and 2028.

Sexton's acquisition for Utah came in the form of a sign-and-trade, with Sexton signing a four-year, $72 million contract as part of the deal.

But Mitchell, obviously, was the headliner. The 25-year-old is a three-time All-Star who has averaged 23.9 points, 4.5 assists and 4.2 rebounds per game in his career. He's been even better in the postseason, upping his scoring average to 28.3 points per game.

For the Cavaliers, he gives the team a top perimeter scorer to pair with franchise point guard Darius Garland and the talented frontcourt duo of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen.

Add in talented wings like Isaac Okoro and Caris LeVert, and the Cavaliers have one of the more intriguing young cores in the Eastern Conference.

And that made adding Mitchell to the mix too good to pass on.

For a while, it appeared as though the New York Knicks were the only game in town in Mitchell trade talks, though once they signed RJ Barrett to a four-year extension worth up to $120 million—which added a complicated poison-pill provision into the situation—those negotiations hit a new snag.

That opened the door for the Cavaliers to make their move, and they pounced. In a loaded Eastern Conference, they look like a major threat.

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