Utah Jazz star guard Donovan Mitchell is heavily bothered by an ankle issue and he was extremely frustrated after a Game 5 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. Mitchell missed more of a month due to an ankle issue but returned to competitive action during the first round series against the Memphis Grizzlies.
Unfortunately for Mitchell and the Jazz, his ankle issue has worsened throughout the Western Conference Semifinal series versus the Clippers. "It's something I'm going to have to deal with," Mitchell after the Clippers took the series lead with a 119-111 road win in Wednesday's Game 5.
"I mean, it f---ing sucks. I ain't got nothing else to say. Like, it's tough when you're trying different things that you normally do and you see spots you can get to, but you can't, so you got to find a way to make it happen.
"It's tough, but I got to find a way. Otherwise, I'm going to be home. And I said it last year ... and I said during the year, we didn't do all this to lose in the second round, so we got to figure it the f--- out.
Otherwise, that's it. Excuse my language."
Mitchell unable to attack the way he would like
Mitchell, who was on a six-game run of at least 30 points per game, scored only 21 points in Game 5 versus the Clippers. "For most of my life, I've been able to push by, explode by, and jump through people or over people, and for the first time in my career, I've had to play on the floor," Mitchell said.
"Knowing when to attack, picking my spots, finding my teammates, I think that's the biggest thing, being able to kind of get off, hit them when they're doubling me and engaging the blitz. And I think I did a solid job of that.
I can do better. It's a learning process and it sucks that I'm learning this through the playoffs, but it is what it is and no excuses." Jazz head coach Quin Snyder acknowledged the importance of Mitchell. "He is carrying a huge load, not just trying to create offense for himself, but for the group," Jazz coach Snyder said.
"[The Jazz medical staff] will continue to evaluate him and see where he is after tonight and continue to monitor that [ankle] and make decisions going forward that obviously have Donovan's best interests, at first and foremost, in mind."