SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Donovan Mitchell is going to be able to take care of his family for long time.
Mitchell, coming off an all-star season with the Utah Jazz, signed a 5-year, $195-million extension with the Jazz with $163 million guaranteed.
“The biggest thing is just being in position to take care of my family,” Mitchell said. “That’s really it for me, making sure my family is set, because I’m trying to win championships, but at the end of the day, I go back home to my mom, my sister and my dad, my family and make sure everybody is good.”
His family will be well taken care of now, and Mitchell will turn his attention to getting better, and helping the Jazz win. He says he will not let his big payday affect his work ethic.
“I’m just going to continue to do what got me here,” Mitchell said. “I’m going to continue to be the same person, the same player, the same work ethic, and everything else will fall into place.”
The Jazz also re-signed Jordan Clarkson and brought back Derrick Favors this off-season. With a healthy Bojan Bogdanovic, the Jazz should be able to contend for a Western Conference title.
But after a second straight first round playoff exit last season, Mitchell knows his team needs to improve, especially on defense.
“You have to defend at a high level, you can’t just rely on our three best defenders, Rudy, Royce and Joe,” he said. “We have to find ways, all of us, one through five, to be better on the defensive end. If we play the way we played in the bubble, as a team, as a unit, especially on the offensive end, and you add Bojan back, I think we’ll be in good shape.”
Off the court, Mitchell wants to use his money to help people, and he plans to continue to be a strong voice on social issues.
“That’s the legacy I want to leave,” he said. “Championships are great, games are great, but at the end of the day, I’m a black man first. And that’s the legacy I want to be able to tell my kids, look, your dad was a part of this, your dad was a part of that, being able to show them this game is great. This game has allowed my family to live the way we live, but at the end of the day, it doesn’t hide you from being black. It doesn’t hide you from the injustice of the world. At the end of the day that’s what it’s really about.”
The Jazz will open training camp December 1st, with the NBA season scheduled to tip off on the 22nd.