The Utah Jazz are 36-22 and currently sit fourth in the Western Conference.
On paper, this team seems fine. They remain in that middle-ground position they’ve been in for years now where they’re a formidable playoff threat, but also no real danger to win a championship.
In reality, though – the Jazz seem to be coming apart. They’ve lost four out of their last 10. They can’t seem to win on the road anymore. There is talk of stars getting traded. And worse yet – Donovan Mitchell’s status seems very much in doubt.
This past week Mitchell sat down with Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes and addressed that very topic head on.
“I think I’ve reached a point where you’re happy with yourself, first off,” he said of the speculation regarding his future with the Jazz.
“But as far as myself with the franchise, I see the articles, but I really address it with my teammates. I’ve seen it. I’m not too stressed about it. I’m not thinking about it. Because for me, it’s about how we can win.
“There’s going to be talk whether I say something, whether I don’t say something because that’s how I’ve always been. I’ve always been someone that’s like, ‘OK, they’re saying stuff. Let’s go ahead and lock in.’ I haven’t really thought too much about it. I’m happy right now and just continuing to find ways to win.”
Obviously that’s not quite the “I’m definitely staying in Utah” that Jazz fans were likely hoping for.
It will be interesting to see where things go from here. Despite what Mitchell has said publicly in recent days, clearly his relationship with Gobert isn’t great.
All the infighting occurring on the Jazz also isn’t a strong selling point for remaining in Utah.
Now that’s how you celebrate a Super Bowl win. https://t.co/ewns5NQxeA
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 16, 2022
If this group can find a way to win, then obviously that will reduce the heat on this situation and perhaps ensure Mitchell stays long-term.
But if the losses start piling up, it wouldn’t be all that crazy to see Mitchell head elsewhere sooner rather than later.