SALT LAKE CITY — It was a play that got the crowd at Vivint Smart Home Arena roaring.
Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell appeared to risk life and limb as he soared toward the front row, swatting away a shot by Golden State’s Klay Thompson before crashing into the stands in the Jazz’ 108-103 win over the Warriors Wednesday night.
“He went over us and landed in the second row, so I jumped up and helped him up, which is kind of cool,” Shawn Anderson said. “I just stood there all fat, dumb and happy and I was trying to get the crowd into it because it was really exciting, and the ball advanced down the other side of the court, and I turned around and Ilana was crying and she said, ‘I can’t feel my foot.’”
Ilana, Anderson’s teenage daughter, was in pain after the collision.
“Donovan stepped on my foot and then fell over me,” Ilana Anderson said. “With the natural arch in the foot, it just kind of flattened it completely.”
Fearing a break, Shawn Anderson rushed his daughter to an emergency room. The family soon learned, though, the injury amounted to a bad bruise and sprain.
Anderson tweeted, “Coolest injury ever! Courtside on the receiving end of a Donovan Mitchell save,” and he tagged Twitter accounts belonging to the Jazz and their star.
Mitchell then quoted the tweet, saying, “I’m glad you are okay! Thanks for helping me out! I got you with a jersey and shoes for sure.”
“It is the coolest injury ever,” the father exclaimed. “This is one of the coolest players in the NBA who happens to step on you, land on you. I mean that’s cool!”1 comment on this story
Ilana said she was also impressed by Mitchell’s response.
Shawn Anderson said it actually wasn’t the first time Mitchell had landed on a family member.
He said something similar happened to his wife last season and Mitchell gave her a fist bump.
He said Ilana plans to be back in the same seat when the Jazz return home Saturday to face the Thunder.
“You sometimes catch errant balls and you sometimes catch errant players,” Anderson said. “There’s an element of risk, and it’s definitely worth it.”