Former Rookie of the Year Runner-Up Donovan Mitchell hasn’t quite seemed like himself this season. Though he has recorded double digits in each game so far, his shooting percentage has suffered and he’s seemed to lack the smoothness and bounce that won him his notoriety.
Donovan struggled in the Jazz’s loss to the Warriors at their home opener last Friday, shooting only 7-23 from the field and 4-12 from three. In the tight final minutes of the game, where the Jazz battled a 14-point comeback by the reigning champ Warriors, Mitchell was trusted with the ball several times–only to come up short.
Mitchell’s frustration has been palpable. “I try my hardest not to get too down on myself,” he said. “But that’s a tough task.” It seems that now that he’s a point of focus for opponents’ defenses, the game isn’t coming quite so easily as it was during Mitchell’s rookie season.
On Wednesday night, though, Mitchell seemed to have regained his confidence. He pulled out the same moves that placed him squarely in the Rookie of the Year conversation last year, and scored 20 points before halftime.
It’s this kind of play that has been expected; the apparent sophomore slump was the surprise. Mitchell averaged 20.5 points across 79 games in his rookie season, and quickly became known for his explosive and hustle-heavy style of play.
Source: Heavy Sports