Donovan Mitchell tallied up thirty-six points, seven rebounds, and five assists in a win over the Pelicans on Thursday. After that, he was told by Shaq during the postgame interview that he “doesn’t have what it takes to get to that next level”.
Immediately after watching the exchange between them, I figured Shaq was just being a hater again. Shaq has a history of disrespecting or speaking negatively about NBA players (McGee, Dwight, and Gobert ); so, I figured this was just another one of those moments and was maybe for the views or whatever. Then, I stopped and thought about it, has Donovan Mitchell actually improved at anything since he got into the league? Furthermore, does he have what it takes to get to that next level?
Kenny Smith did try and clarify furthermore how Donovan Mitchell could get to the next level. He said Mitchell needs to be able to affect the game with rebounding and assists as well as scoring.
Has He Improved?
As I checked out, Mitchell’s yearly stats I noticed something that coincides with what Shaq said. To begin, Mitchell has only increased his stat averages by a small amount yearly since his rookie season. Not only that, but some of his stats have actually seen a decrease this season such as his rebounding and steals.
It is still early in this season so his stat averages will change of course. Still, it was a little alarming to not see much growth from the young star. On the other hand, it’s nothing to panic about if you’re the Utah Jazz because Donovan Mitchell is still a star and plays like one; he just might not be a superstar.
Does He Have What It Takes?
It’s still extremely possible for Mitchell to “get to that next level” and he is improving, barely. Growth is still growth no matter how minuscule the development, and as a result, should be applauded to an extent. On the other hand, if Mitchell wants to prove to everyone, Shaq included that he’s up to the task of reaching superstar heights then he’s gonna have to step it up a notch.
For that, he will have to increase his energy on the boards, cut out unnecessary turnovers, and start looking to create more for his teammates. Certainly, scoring-wise, he is already top-notch, so improving other parts of his game will only be positive not only for him but also for the Utah Jazz organization as a whole.
Does Donovan Mitchell have what it takes to “get to that next level”? In short, of course, he can become a superstar but if he does is up to him.
I’m just a guy who loves the NBA and would love to hear your opinions, follow me on Twitter @MARStheMARS and tell me your thoughts about the NBA