SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell was tremendous last week as the Jazz wound up being reduced to no point guards because of injury, as he averaged 31.5 points, 5.8 assists, 4.3 rebounds and one block over four games.
In fact, the NBA determined Monday that Mitchell was the best player in the entire Western Conference, as he was named the conference’s Player of the Week for the first time in his career.
Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard received the honors for the Eastern Conference.
Mitchell’s accolade comes after the second-year guard was named Western Conference Rookie of the Month four out of five times last season.
After the Jazz lost to the Milwaukee Bucks on the road Jan. 7, they won three straight at Vivint Arena as Mitchell scored 33, 33 and 34 points. His run of three straight 30-point games is the longest streak of his career.
“I think he’s given himself permission to attack,” Utah head coach Quin Snyder said last Saturday after the Jazz beat the Chicago Bulls for their third straight win. “Previous to that, there were games where it felt like he could bust through something and use his explosiveness. He’s done that these last couple of games. He’s done a really good job of that in transition and missed baskets and steals.”
Utah was once again without all three usual point guards on Monday night as it closed a four-game homestand against the Detroit Pistons.
GRAYSON ALLEN GETTING BIGGER MINUTES: The Jazz's 2018 first-round draft pick, Grayson Allen, has played sparingly this season, and then dealt with a sprained ankle for a few weeks before returning last Saturday against the Bulls.4 comments on this story
Now because of all the other injuries to Utah's backcourt, Allen has logged significant playing time the last two contests. He played 14 minutes against Chicago and 20 against Detroit.
Allen scored seven points versus the Bulls and eight versus the Pistons.
INGLES INJURY: Joe Ingles has played major minutes as the Jazz's de facto point guard with all the injuries they've faced, but on Monday he had a scare of his own.
In the second quarter, Ingles went down with what was diagnosed as a mildly sprained left ankle, but he returned to action after halftime and finished with 13 points.