Phoenix Suns among winners in Donovan Mitchell trade to Cleveland Cavaliers

Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

More good news for the Phoenix Suns and the rest of the NBA’s Western Conference, with Utah Jazz’ All-Star Donovan Mitchell being moved East to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Cavaliers have executed a sign-and-trade with free agent point-guard Collin Sexton, sending him to the Jazz alongside Lauri Markkanen, 2022 lottery pick Ochai Agbaji, three unprotected first-round picks and two pick swaps.

Donovan Mitchell’s defection to the Eastern Conference eliminates another Western Conference All-Star from the Phoenix Suns’ warpath.

The 25-year-old was long touted to head to the East, with the New York Knicks seen as the likely destination following Danny Ainge’s decision to detonate Utah into a rebuild. Just a few days ago, ESPN’s survey of league insiders saw 14 of the 15 panelists believing the the three-time All-Star would end up in New York.

"“If what [the Jazz] want is draft picks, if that’s their most important thing, then New York has the ability to give them what they want. You’re never going to get [full] value when you trade a guy like that, so it becomes a matter of what’s important to the team involved. It seems like that’s what Utah wants”, an eastern conference executive said."

Phoenix Suns, Donovan Mitchell
Phoenix Suns, Donovan Mitchell (Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) /

Instead, Mitchell pairs with Darius Garland to form a dynamic backcourt, with Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen providing the defensive versatility in the frontcourt. The Cavaliers join a host of teams fighting for a high seed in the East, just like Brooklyn do now with the recent recommital of Kevin Durant. Dejounte Murray is another 2022 All-Star who’s moved East in the offseason, dealt by the San Antonio Spurs to the Atlanta Hawks.

Mitchell has a 9-5 win-loss record against the Suns in his career, however Phoenix have got the better of Utah in four of their past five outings. He’s often proved a tough matchup for the Suns though, averaging 24.7 points on an impressive 46.1% from three-point range.

Next. ESPN survey has Phoenix Suns second favourite to win the West. dark

The Suns will meet in January next year, with the teams two meetings coming in a five-day span on the 5th and 9th.