There were some ups and downs in the performance of Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell in FIBA group play, but overall he’s played exceptionally well for Team USA.
After a slew of exciting games, FIBA World Cup group play has come to an end for Team USA and the other competitors from around the world. The United States had a close shave against Turkey, but handled their business quite well other than that, finishing with a perfect 5-0 record.
Things are undoubtedly about to get much, much tougher for them, though, as they’ll kick off the quarter-finals against Rudy Gobert and France in the first round of the true elimination bracket on Wednesday. The French squad was one win away from perfection in group play as their sole lose came by a narrow two-point margin to Joe Ingles and Australia. They’ll be hungry and anxious to take advantage of a US team that many consider vulnerable.
A couple quarter-final contests have already been decided as Spain defeated Poland on Tuesday and Argentina surprisingly upset Serbia, the squad many thought would present the toughest challenge for Team USA. If the United States manages to get past France, they’ll take on the Argentinian squad in the semi-finals.
But before we get ahead of ourselves and start thinking about the elimination bracket, I thought now was as good of a time as ever to pause and reflect on what we’ve seen out of Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell thus far now that group play has concluded. With five FIBA games under his belt in his first action for Team USA, there’s been a lot to digest about Donovan’s play, both good and bad.
Let’s dive in to some of both aspects of the FIBA performance of Donovan Mitchell, who’s been forecasted by many to have a superstar breakout season in year three.