SALT LAKE CITY — It's standard protocol for NBA players to have film sessions with their coaches. It is, however, uncommon for the public to get a peek into the specifics of these training opportunities.
The Utah Jazz recently allowed ESPN inside of the film room while Donovan Mitchell was working with coaches Quin Snyder and Johnnie Bryant, and the behind-the-curtain peek (with video) is pretty fascinating.
Here are some highlights of how Mitchell and Jazz coaches work on his game in the film room, as described by writer Tim MacMahon:
• Snyder can have a fun sense of humor with his players, which was highlighted in this exchange:
"What do you got going there?" Snyder said, referring to a celebration move. "Is that a new arrow thing you got going?"
"Sometimes," Mitchell replied, "I just do things that come to my head."
• Mitchell shoots 48.5 percent on corner threes and just 32.5 percent above the break, so Bryant has tried to emphasize the importance of springing to the corner on certain transition plays instead of settling on the wing, McMahon wrote. It helps spacing, and he's got a better chance of making the shot from the corner. Bryant told ESPN, "I know this might sound bad, but I hope that he misses those shots at the break, so I can be like, 'The basketball gods are rewarding you for getting to the corner.'"
• Mitchell gets some praise ("So this is a great example, Donovan, of you starting the blender," Snyder said) and some critiquing (got blamed for not allowing Rudy Gobert to fully execute a pick-and-roll).
• Mitchell continues to excel at executing a "goofy-foot finish," which is the Bryant-taught technique he uses to foil would-be shot-blockers by jumping off the right foot and using his right hand for quick scoop shots.
• "One thing about him is he's not afraid to try things and really apply it," Bryant told ESPN. "That's something that's rare. A lot of guys want to stay in their comfort zone. He has the ability to go out there and apply it."
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