The Utah Jazz may have taken a 3-1 lead against the Memphis Grizzlies in their first round playoffs series, but Donovan Mitchell doesn’t want the team to be complacent. After all, they should know very well that no lead is safe in the NBA, especially in the postseason.
After the Jazz took Game 4 on the road, Mitchell quickly toned down expectations and highlighted their need to focus on Game 5 where the pressure will be on them to close.
“The job’s not done,” the 24-year-old explosive guard shared, per Eric Walden of The Salt Lake Tribune. “It’s not finished. That’s the message. We have to take care of business back in Utah,”
Moreover, Mitchell acknowledged that there is nothing more dangerous than a team with their backs against the wall–fighting for their lives. The Grizzlies are in such situation, and as the Golden State Warriors learned in the battle for the eighth seed in the West, a hungry Grizzly is lethal.
“[The Grizzlies] a team that’s never gonna quit, —up 30, down 30, whatever quarter. … Too many times tonight, we get up 9 and get careless. I threw a baseball pass for a turnover. I had another bad pass. Those are the things we have to nip in the bud,” the Jazz star said of Memphis about their Game 4 showdown.
The Jazz don’t need to look at others to know the dangers and pitfalls of the playoffs. During the 2020 postseason, they also took a 3-1 lead against the Denver Nuggets–losing the opener and winning three straight just like this 2021–but they collapsed and suffered an early exit despite expectations they are set for the second round.
Donovan Mitchell and the Jazz cannot let that happen again, and fans are certainly hoping they have learned their lesson from their previous heartbreak.