Cleveland Cavaliers acquire Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell in blockbuster trade

After the New York Knicks temporarily left the talks on Monday evening, the Cleveland Cavaliers aggressively pursued and acquired the All-Star guard three times Donovan Mitchell in a trade with Utah Jazz Thursday, sources told ESPN.

The Cavaliers drive the Jazz forward Lauri Markkanenrookie wing Off Blackguardian Collin Sextonthree unprotected first-round picks (2025, 2027 and 2029) and two pick trades (2026 and 2028) for Mitchell, sources said.

Sexton has agreed to a four-year, $72 million sign-and-trade deal to join the Jazz, his agent, Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul, told ESPN.

The deal turns the Cavaliers into an Eastern Conference contender with potential stamina, adding Mitchell to a roster that includes two 2022 All-Star players – the guard Darius Garland and center Jarrett Allen – and finalist for Rookie of the Year Evan Mobleywho seems destined to become an All-NBA player.

As Utah reshapes its roster with off-season star trades Rudy Gobert and now Mitchell, the franchise has 13 unprotected or lightly protected first-round picks through 2029 and two first-round picks in 2022, including Agbaji of Kansas and 7-footer Walker Keslerthat arrived with four first-round picks from Minnesota.

Utah plans to continue talks on offloading veteran assets, including Bojan Bogdanovic, Jordan Clarkson and Mike Conley Jr., and could be approaching a draft asset in Oklahoma City.

Cleveland general manager Koby Altman had been in talks with the Jazz until late last week, but ended talks on Friday when the two teams couldn’t reach an agreement, sources said. sources. Nonetheless, Altman reached out to Utah general manager Justin Zanik on Tuesday morning and resumed talks, sources said. Within 48 hours they had a deal for Mitchell.

New York had the asset package that Utah preferred and the parties appeared to be closing in on a trade Sunday night and Monday, but New York was reluctant to include Quentin Grimes in a business with RJ Barrett to acquire Mitchell, sources said.

when keep Emmanuel Quickley was offered as a replacement for Grimes in the trade, Utah wanted three unprotected first-round picks as part of the package – but New York would only make a third first-round pick comprising the top 5 protections, officials said. sources. Those packages would have included two second-round picks, two pick trades and two expiring third-team contracts, sources said. New York would have moved Evan Fournier and the first-round pick to a third team to spare Utah from taking the remaining $37 million from Fournier, sources said.

New York president Leon Rose had conducted a parallel negotiation with Barrett’s agent Bill Duffy over a rookie contract extension and set Monday night as a deadline with the Jazz to secure a deal – or suspend talks to finalize a new deal with Barrett, sources said. Barrett’s deal — four years and worth up to $120 million, Duffy told ESPN — added a “Poison Pill” provision to his contract through next July and would have forced the Knicks and Jazz to resume talks with new chord settings based on the extension.

New York planned to continue pursuing Mitchell, sources said, but the Jazz turned to Cleveland talks and never engaged New York in talks again this week, sources said. The Knicks had made a calculated bet that they could still make a deal for Mitchell. A New York-area native, Mitchell was excited to play for the Knicks, sources said.

Mitchell became available in trade talks after the Jazz moved Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves in July. Mitchell, 25, averaged 23.9 points and 4.5 assists per game during his five-year career with the Jazz, and he’s been an All-Star each of the past three seasons. He has four years and $134.9 million left on the max extension he signed in the 2020 offseason, but the final season is a player option for $37.1 million.

Utah has made the playoffs the past six seasons, the longest current streak in the Western Conference, but the Jazz have not made it past the second round in that span. The organization has undergone major changes following last year’s first-round exit against the Dallas Mavericksincluding the resignation of coach Quin Snyder, the hiring of Will Hardy to replace him, and the trades of Gobert and starting forward Royce O’Neal.

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