There’s a new king in Cleveland


Jason Miller

Donavan Mitchell during a game with the Boston Celtics. “Just being in the NBA is crazy and also after every bucket that I make or every pass it’s kind of like, ‘Woah, I just did that.’ It’s been awesome,” Mitchell said.

“The Cavaliers trailed by 21 in the second quarter, they come all the way back, and they do it behind one of the great performances in the history of the NBA,” announcer Adam Amin said in a voice that was filled with disbelief and awe. “71 (points) from Donovan Mitchell, and the Cavaliers win it in overtime.”

This was the reaction of NBC Sports Chicago’s play-by-play commentator, Adam Amin, to Donovan Mitchell’s career night against the Chicago Bulls on Jan. 2, at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse. Mitchell had 71 points, 8 rebounds, 11 assists, on 65% shooting from the field and 47% from three. This game broke numerous records in basketball and poses a new question for Cavs fans, is there a new king in Cleveland who can take LeBron James’ place since Mitchell now holds Cavs record for points in a single game?

Since the Cavaliers traded for Mitchell, a shooting guard, in the 2022 offseason. Mitchell came from the Utah Jazz where he was a star there. However he came at a cost trading away Collin Sexton, Lauri Markkenen and some drafts picks. 

 However, he has made an immediate impact to the team’s success. Last season, the Cavaliers offensive rating barely made it into the top 20 of all NBA teams. Coming in as the 20th ranked team with a 111.9 offensive rating, there were definitely some changes to be made.

That is where Mitchell comes in. In the 46 games that the Cavaliers have played so far this year, their offensive rating is 114.8, ranked 12th in the league. That is a significant improvement from last year, however that also includes when Mitchell is injured. When he is healthy, the Cavaliers have a 115.5 offensive rating, which is ranked 6th in the NBA. That is an even crazier improvement from last season.

Mitchell is averaging amazing statistics this season. He has catapulted this team from the 9th seed and out of the playoffs, to the 5th seed and a finals contender.  Overall he has just been that x-factor that the team needed. 

So, is Mitchell the new king of Cleveland? I would say that he is not quite there yet. He has given fans the first real glimpse of hope that the Cavaliers could make the playoffs, and maybe the championship, for the first time since Lebron James was on the team.  Even with all of this taken into account, he still has more to prove on this team.  One game does not make a person a the best player in history but fans are hopeful that he can take the throne one