Donovan Mitchell’s historic (not hyperbole) opening round performance in the 2020 NBA Playoffs continued Sunday night with a 51-point effort in a 129-127 Jazz win over the Denver Nuggets in Game Four.
That performance means that Mitchell is now the only active player in the NBA with multiple 50-point playoff performances. Not LeBron, not KD, not James Harden. Only Don.
The climax of Mitchell’s latest unreal performance came late in the 4th quarter when he buried a contested three in Paul Milsap’s face just moments after Milsap had blocked his shot and stared him down. Mitchell then turned around and screamed “I want this shit” multiple times.
It was cool.
“That shot was a symbol of just what — not myself, but just as a team, what we wanted,” Mitchell said after the game. “And we worked hard to get to this point. But the job’s not finished. And as good as this one feels, we won by two, and we’re on to Game 5.”
The Jazz now lead the series three games to one, and will have a chance to close out the Nuggets in game five, Thursday at 4 p.m.
Donovan Mitchell and Wilt Chamberlain are the only players in NBA history with multiple 50-point playoff games within their first three seasons.— Kelly Dickey (@RealCardGame) August 24, 2020
Mitchell, Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson and Jerry West are now the only players in NBA history with multiple 50-point games in the same playoffs.
“Honestly, it’s the first round,” Mitchell said of joining Jordan and Iverson with two 50-point games in one series. “The two guys you named have made it to the Finals. Michael Jordan is obviously the greatest basketball player of all time. I got a lot of work to do to catch up to those guys. I am honored to be in that category, but we are doing all this in the first round.”
“It’s no secret that last year’s playoffs wasn’t my best,” added Mitchell, who spent countless hours during the pandemic watching film. “And I took that personally, and I am going to trust my work and keep moving forward.”
It’s still unreal that he’s this good. Like, historically good.
Keep rollin’, Don.