As Ferris Bueller once said, life moves pretty fast. Just a few days ago, the NBA chattering class had the Utah Jazz buried and broken up when they fell behind 2-1 in their best-of-seven Western Conference playoff series with the Dallas Mavericks.
After winning Game 4 to tie the series, there was renewed hope. But after an embarrassing blowout loss in Game 5, the Jazz have been buried once again.
That’s how it goes in the Association.
To make matters worse, All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell left Game 5 limping. On Tuesday, the official Jazz account tweeted an update.
"Mitchell has bi-lateral quadriceps contusions and will continue treatment. His status for Game 6 against Dallas will be updated on Wednesday," the team tweeted.
Just in case you haven’t completed medical school or mastered WebMD, a bi-lateral quadriceps contusion is essentially a bruised thigh. The Jazz promised an update on whether or not he will play Game 6 on Wednesday.
So, with the Jazz facing elimination at home, they're also left to wonder whether their top scorer will be available and how they might replace his 26 points per game.
It begs the question: have Utah fans seen Mitchell in a Jazz uniform for the final time already?
Even as the season wound down, rumors began to build that an early playoff exit would mean big changes for a team that has not found postseason success with Mitchell and Rudy Gobert leading the way. The Jazz also made a mid-season addition of an executive with a history of making big trades in Danny Ainge.
On Monday, ESPN NBA guru Michael Wilbon joined the Tony Kornheiser Show and predicted big changes coming in SLC.
“Utah is going away. They are going to blow that team up,” Wilbon told Kornheiser. “I don’t know if they are going to keep Donovan Mitchell and try to build around him or if they’ll trade Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert. I don’t know the answer to that or if anybody does. I think it depends on the offers that are out there.”
If Mitchell, who missed 15 games during the regular season, sits on Wednesday, and the Jazz lose, he may find himself in new team threads before next season tips off.
And don’t expect any sympathy from the Mavs, who won two of the first three games in the series without their best player, Luka Doncic. Game 6 of the series is set for Thursday night in Salt Lake City, giving Mitchell two days of rest between games.