Takeaway No. 3: Spida
Donovan Mitchell is back to playing at an MVP level. After setting the table for others with a career-high 13 assists against the Hawks on Saturday, Spida reminded us that he can still cook too with 37 points against the Rockets.
Most importantly, Mitchell was efficient. He went 14-of-27 from the field, four-of-11 from three point range, and only had two turnovers in 45 minutes of game action. The Rockets came in with the number two defense in the league, and Mitchell was hounded by Dillon Brooks, Tari Eason, and others throughout the whole night.
However, he was a huge reason why the Cavs were able to score 135 points. One of the most impressive parts of Mitchell’s performance was his ability to set the tone. He had multiple and ones, and hustle plays that can galvanize a team. The guy was diving for loose balls with the team up seven, and the game was well in hand with seconds remaining.
Things like that show the terrific leadership Mitchell has, and how committed he truly is. With rumors swirling about whether or not he will be in the Wine and Gold for the long term, Mitchell is laser-focused on the task ahead. If he keeps playing at this level, and the Cavs keep winning, he might force his way into the MVP conversation.
The Cavs are now 2-0 since Garland, and Mobley went down with injuries. The theme has been staying together, and staying connected. At times this season, it has seemed that the Cavaliers were disjointed, and not as together as they should be. Now they are playing together, free, and with nothing to lose.
The Cavs have to keep going if they want to survive this stretch.