Is Donovan Mitchell playing tonight? Latest Cleveland Cavaliers Game 4 injury update

After another tough blow to his troubled knee, will Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell take the floor in Game Four?
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Two
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Two / Jason Miller/GettyImages

In Game Three, Cleveland Cavaliers superstar Donovan Mitchell aggravated a lingering knee injury that has plagued him since the All-Star break.

While more than one sore knee played a role in Cleveland's pitiful blowout loss to the Orlando Magic, entering Game Four without Mitchell would almost guarantee a tied series in the fifth matchup. Mitchell has by far been the most impactful Cavalier, setting an aggressive and confident tone in the first two games for the Cavs.

As the Magic cruised to their first playoff game win with their current core, Mitchell notched an inefficient 13 point, seven assists and five rebounds. The All-Star guard did all in his power to influence the game without scoring, but the lack of fight from the rest of the team buried the Cavs into a deep grave early. Once the Cavaliers fell behind the Magic in the first half, they never seemed mentally prepared to fight back and regain the advantage.

Fortunately for Cleveland, the scoreboard resets to 0-0 at tip off in Game Four, and they still maintain a 2-1 series lead. To bounce back against Orlando, though, the Cavs will desperately need Donovan Mitchell healthy and ready to elevate Cleveland ahead of the Magic once more.

Will Donovan Mitchell play in Game Four with the Cavaliers?

Following the Cavaliers' off-day practice, insider Chris Fedor relayed an update on Mitchell's health via his exclusive Subtext where he often publishes timely and useful information to his followers.

According to Fedor, Mitchell participated in every drill in practice regardless of his lingering pain. Still, Mitchell took precautions by wearing a protective sleeve on his leg, similar to Orlando's Jalen Suggs' sleeve introduced after a scary fall in Game Two. In a brutally physical series, minor injuries are bound to occur. The Cavaliers entered the first round openly ready for an aggressive and physical battle. They dished it out in the first two games, and now Mitchell is seemingly ready to take it in stride.

In his postgame interview, Mitchell waved off Fedor's question about his knee, simply saying "I'll be alright, Chris." Mitchell has maintained an intention to appear for the Cavaliers every game in the postseason, willing himself to health after months of sustained pain in his knee. His mindset was set on doing his job in Game Four, noting Orlando's dominant rebounding as a clear factor in the loss. To this point, the Cavs had won the battle on the boards in convincing fashion.

Mitchell's ability to play through injury showcases his dedication to the squad in the postseason. He knows that his legacy is not defined by playing well in the first round and losing in the second, looking forward to the Conference Finals and NBA Finals to define his success. Throughout his career, Mitchell has logged numerous spectacular postseason performances; yet, he has never witnessed a conference finals atmosphere, only going as far as the second round.

Despite a desire to make a deep run, Mitchell will need help from his running mates to meet his lofty goals. Through three games, both Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen have consistently provided terrific defense and reliable scoring punches. The second unit and role players will need to step up if the Cavs hope to sustain their success and convince Mitchell to stick around for the long-term.

Mobley logged three blocks against the Magic in Game Three alongside 10 points. His outside shot has not been as valuable for the Cavs since the first game, but the Magic have continually kept a body on him on the arc, adding to his offensive influence as a floor spacer. The Cavaliers need to unlock Mobley to unlock their ceiling, though, meaning nine field goals will not cut it going forward. Mobley has improved his efficiency every season; yet, his usage and role on the team stays stagnant.

As for Allen, the 'Fro added 15 points and eight rebounds in what was his first game without a double-double of the series. Cavs coach J.B. Bickestaff pulled the starters early, and Allen only played 24 minutes on the night. He likely would have pulled in a few more misses with more time on the court, and he will hopefully enter the fourth installment of the first round with a desire to return to the high standards he set throughout a career regular season campaign.

The Orlando Magic host the Cleveland Cavaliers once again on Saturday, April 27 for an early afternoon 1:00 pm Eastern Time matinee before returning to northeast Ohio for Game Five. The Cavs will look to assert themselves once more to build their series advantage with a chance to advance back home.

Next. 4 keys for Cavaliers to overcome Magic in Round 1. 4 keys for Cavaliers to overcome Magic in Round 1. dark