(Photo of Donovan Mitchell: Russell Isabella/USA TODAY Sports)
NEW YORK - Former University of Louisville standout and NBA superstar Donovan Mitchell has been named to the 2021 NBA All-Star Game as a reserve player, the league announced Wednesday on NBA on TNT.
The fourth-year player for the Utah Jazz is averaging 24.5 points, 4.4 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game, all of which are good for career-highs. He is also shooting 43.0% from the field and a career-best 38.9% on three-point attempts. This is his second time being named an NBA All-Star, following last season.
The 6-foot-1, 215-pound shooting guard has quickly ascended to superstardom over the last couple seasons, and continues to add milestones to his young NBA career. He became the fastest player to hit 600 career three-pointers earlier this season, and became the third-fastest active NBA player to score 5,000 career points last season, trailing only LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
The Greenwich, Conn. native really began to put the league on notice during the 2020 NBA Playoffs. During Game 1 of the Jazz's opening round series against the Denver Nuggets, he scored a career-high 57 points. He became the youngest player to score 50+ in a playoff game since Michael Jordan's 63 vs. the Celtics in 1986, and it was the third-highest playoff scoring game behind MJ's 63 and Elgin Baylor's 61 in the 1962 NBA Finals also against the Celtics.
While Utah lost the series to Denver, it was not due to Mitchell's efforts. He averaged 36.3 points per game during the seven-game series, and became just the third player in NBA history to have a pair of 50-point games in a single playoff series (Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson).
After the playoffs, Mitchell and the Jazz agreed to a five-year, $195 million designated rookie max extension. The deal is guaranteed for $163 million, and meeting the All-NBA criteria for each season could increase it to the full $195 million.
Mitchell was drafted with the No. 13 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft by the Nuggets, only to be traded to the Jazz on draft night. As a sophomore at Louisville, Mitchell averaged 15.6 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.7 assists en route to being named a 2016-17 First Team All-ACC selection.
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