Knicks Could Lose Donovan Mitchell Sweepstakes with New Trade Proposal

Donovan Mitchell, New York Knicks

Getty Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz drives into Terry Rozier of the Charlotte Hornets.

The New York Knicks may be the most noteworthy team pursuing Jazz star Donovan Mitchell this summer, but they are by no means the only ones vying for his services.

Per an August 17 episode on ESPN 700’s “The Drive,” Utah sports radio host Spence Checketts told the Salt Lake Tribune’s Andy Larsen that there have been quite a number of offers from teams not based in New York that Danny Ainge and company seem to like quite a bit.

“I was told by a source that the Jazz actually have a couple of offers that I was told are from other teams outside of New York that they like an awful lot,“ Checketts said.

Since this report surfaced, Checketts has gone on to state in an August 22 episode of the show that there is a “mystery team” inquiring about Mitchell’s availability.

While it’s anyone’s guess as to which ball club may be lurking in the shadows, one team that could be a legitimate threat to swipe the All-Star should they be interested in enetering the sweepstakes is a rising young Eastern Conference squad, the Charlotte Hornets.

Led by the likes of third-year sensation LaMelo Ball, the Hornets are an organization looking to make a splash after barely missing out on the postseason just last year with a record of 43-39.

Perhaps teaming their star point guard with Utah’s star shooting guard could be a way to do exactly that.

Apparently, the folks at Bleacher Report believe this idea could be rather plausible as writer Zach Buckley recently concocted a multi-team exchange that, in his eyes, could be a more significant haul for Utah than what the Knicks are currently offering.

The framework of Buckley’s proposed deal reads as follows:

Charlotte Hornets receive:

  • Donovan Mitchell

Utah Jazz receive:

  • Ben Simmons
  • P.J. Washington
  • Three future first-round picks (from CHO)

Brooklyn Nets receive:

  • Gordon Hayward
  • 2023 first-round pick (via DEN, from CHO)

Obviously the biggest wildcard in this exchange is Utah’s willingness to take on Ben Simmons, as he’s attatched to a contract that will pay him an average salary of $37.9 million through 2025.

However, Buckley believes that there’s plenty for the Jazz to like about this hypothetical deal.

Why Utah Would Consider Accepting

With this proposed trade by Buckley, the Utah Jazz may not be acquiring the types of players that can help the franchise embark on a classic full-fledged rebuild but they certainly are still bringing on several high-caliber players in their mid-twenties or younger along with several picks.

“Could this suffice? It depends on Utah’s evaluation of the polarizing Ben Simmons, a 26-year-old who’s already been a three-time All-Star and two-time All-Defensive selection but also sat out all of last season with a back injury that still hasn’t fully healed.

“If Utah sees him as a centerpiece, though, then it would get a primary building block, a do-it-all combo big in P.J. Washington and a trio of first-round picks,” Buckley wrote

Throughout his five-year career in the association, Simmons finds himself boasting impressive stat-sheet stuffing averages of 15.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 7.9 assists, 1.7 steals, and just shy of a block per game on 56% shooting from the floor while the 24-year-old Washington has averaged 11.8 points, 5.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and a block on 37.5% shooting from deep since being selected 12th overall by Charlotte back in the 2019 NBA Draft.

With them in tow, coupled with the draft capital acquired, the Jazz would find themselves rostering a nice young foundation while also giving themselves the ability to re-build through the draft moving forward.

Knicks Fans Troll Latest Offer

According to an August 22 report by The Athletic’s Shams Charania, league sources have informed him and Tony Jones that New York has sent out a new proposal in Utah’s direction, with a package consisting of Evan Fournier, Obi Toppin, additional salary, and five total first-round picks.

To no surprise, the Jazz rejected this offer from Leon Rose and company, as it still falls well short of their rather lofty trade demands.

As is the case in the modern tech age, words spread rather fast about New York’s proposal and, as a result, Knicks fans took to social media to share their feelings on the news.

The consensus opinion, in laymans terms, was that this type of offer is no where near worthy of Utah’s consideration, as one fan, in particular, stated that the franchise is “not seriously pursuing Donovan Mitchell if this is their offer.

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