Why popular podcast says Cavaliers’ Mitchell is not best shooting guard

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The Cleveland Cavaliers are getting an epic season out of Donovan Mitchell. The former Utah Jazz guard is on track for an All-NBA berth in his first year in Cleveland, with a 71-point game under his belt. It’s hard for Cavs fans to have expected more from him.

In the midst of his great season, it’s natural to look around the league at the success of his peers. Has Mitchell ascended to be the best shooting guard in the league? It’s not simply a fun question to ask; it matters for scenarios like contract extensions, trades, etc as the Cavs evaluate their players against the rest of the league.

Do the Cleveland Cavaliers have the league’s best shooting guard?

While there are plenty of outlets that will rank players — we will do so during the offseason — one of the best is the Dunc’d On Basketball Podcast. Nate Duncan and Danny Leroux are some of the sharpest basketball minds in the business, and their rankings come with copious amounts of research, thought and insight.

That doesn’t mean they are obviously right, especially since they will often disagree with one another, but their rankings should hold weight. Recently, they posted a podcast episode (here, although it’s behind a paywall) ranking the league’s shooting guards; Donovan Mitchell was not number one.

That honor, instead, went to Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns, in a tier by himself above Mitchell. The Suns’ guard missed an extended period of time this year due to injury, but in the games he has played he has averaged a career-best 27.6 points per game on 49.2 percent shooting from the field.

Why was Booker ranked ahead of Mitchell? The podcast hosts gave two main reasons. Let’s dig into what they said and decide whether or not their analysis was sound.

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