‘Difference Between a Star and Regular Player’: Charles Barkley Praises Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell for Game 1 Heroics

Published 06/09/2021, 8:23 AM EDT
Jun 8, 2021; Salt Lake City, Utah, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) reacts after a three-pointer in the first quarter against the LA Clippers during game one in the second round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs. at Vivint Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports


The LA Clippers took on the Utah Jazz yesterday, in game 1 of the second round of the playoff. Given how stars like Donovan Mitchell and Kawhi Leonard performed in the first round, this match-up is certainly a must watch.

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The game got off to a blistering start for the visitors, as Kawhi and Co. took a commanding 25-18 lead in the first quarter. They extended their lead to a further 13 points as the halftime score was 60-47. Just as the Clippers looked in cruise control, the Jazz had other plans.

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With Donovan Mitchell firing in all cylinders, the Jazz had a fantastic third quarter and tied the game. They carried on with this momentum, with Mitchell leading them. The Jazz ultimately took control of the fourth quarter and ultimately ousted the Clippers 112-109 to take a 1-0 lead in the series.

Charles Barkley praises Utah Jazz superstar Donovan Mitchell

This game clearly had one standout performer, Spida Mitchell. The 2-time All-Star certainly had one of the best performances of this season’s playoffs scoring a whooping 45-points yesterday.

D Mitch was also efficient from the floor as well. Shooting 16 of the 30 shots he attempted, Mitchell outscored the duo of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George who had a combined total of 43 points.

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Hall of Famer and analyst Charles Barkley was certainly impressed with the 24-year-old’s performance. In a recent appearance at NBA on TNT, Barkley said, “What you saw tonight was a star saying, we’re not going to lose tonight.

“When the third quarter started, Donovan Mitchell said I’m going to shoot this thing every time, shoot a three or go to the basket. He said, ‘we’re not going to lose tonight.’ The other guys chipped in late. But to me, this is the difference between a star and just regular players: he was not going to let them lose that game tonight.”

Jun 8, 2021; Salt Lake City, Utah, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) watches is three-pointer drop against LA Clippers forward Nicolas Batum (33) in the first quarter during game one in the second round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs. at Vivint Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Barkley added, “He was so aggressive. And listen, it’s like he said. These guys can’t make no shots. I’m going to shoot it every time. And I actually liked it. When you’re a starter, that’s your responsibility.”

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Despite finishing as the first seed in the stacked Western Conference, the Jazz have often been overlooked as contenders. If Donovan Mitchell along with Rudy Gobert, Mike Conley step up, the Jazz can surely make it to the Finals. Do you think the Jazz can win it all this season? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Aditya Mohapatra

1185 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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