Revisiting the Epic Battle Between Donovan Mitchell and Jamal Murray
Revisiting the epic battle between Donovan Mitchell and Jamal Murray
The bubble has been something else, hasn’t it? Man, all these storylines and matchups have made me really glad that basketball resumed.
It’s hard to choose what’s been my favorite moment. But choosing the best series is a much easier decision. The first-round clash between the Nuggets and Jazz saw seven games of explosive outbursts from two 23-year-old guards. You can’t beat that.
In this modern NBA, it seems like the best players want to team up rather than square off. So before Donovan Mitchell and Jamal Murray form a big market superteam, let’s relive their epic battle. It was just so fun.
Final Stat Lines:
Donovan Mitchell: 36. 3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.9 assists. 52.9 FG%, 51.6 3P%, 4.7 3PAs
Jamal Murray: 31.6 points, 5.6 rebounds, 6.3 assists. 52.9 FG%, 49.1 3P%, 4.6 3PAs
Eerily similar and spectacular. But because these two stars each had stinkers in Games 3 and 7, let’s pull these performances and just compare Mitchell and Murray at their best:
Mitchell: 42.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 6.4 assists. 56.6 FG%, 58.0 3P%, 5.8 3PAs
Murray: 38.0 points, 6.4 rebounds, 6.8 assists. 62.3 FG%, 63.0 3P%, 5.8 3PAs
Those are some crazy numbers and just pop right out at you. But they only tell part of the story.
In Game 1, Donovan went berserk for a jaw-dropping 57 points - the third most ever in a postseason game. However, with 1:32 left in the fourth quarter and the Jazz up 111-108, Jamal said “Hold my beer.” From that point, Murray scored 15 points and dished two assists, leading his team to a 10-point overtime Win.
In Game 2, Mitchell had a thirst for revenge and a fire from deep as he made 6-of-7 treys for 30 points in a blowout victory to even up the series.
The next game saw our beloved ringers cooling off, only to roar back in Game 4. Murray and Mitchell both scored 50 points. Mitchell’s 51 was enough to secure a commanding 3-1 series lead for the Jazz.
Murray and Co. would not be stopped, and the Nuggets battled back to force a Game 7. Neither Jamal nor Don looked particularly dominant in that final game, but for sure the lasting memory of this series - one of the best in recent memory - will be the epic duel between Jamal Murray and Donovan Mitchell.
These are the types of matchups you just love to see. We the fans owe these guys a big thanks for leaving it all on the court. I definitely wouldn’t mind seeing this matchup again next year.