NBA legend Magic Johnson says Utah's Donovan Mitchell is superstar like James, Durant, Curry

Stephen A. Smith says Mitchell is best Jazzman of all time
Donovan Mitchell, Thaddeus Young
Posted at 6:29 PM, Jun 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-12 03:58:22-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Some prominent figures in the NBA community are "Tak[ing] Note" of Utah Jazz All-Star Donovan Mitchell's recent success.

"Donovan Mitchell is a bonafide superstar, scoring 45 points in Game 1 and 37 points in Game 2! We have to start mentioning his name more with [Kevin Durant], LeBron [James], Steph [Curry], etc.," Magic Johnson tweeted Friday.

Johnson, a decorated former point guard who played for the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s, nowadays often weighs in on current teams, players and happenings in the NBA.

It was a bold take, and many replied to either agree or disagree.

"Hold on big man. Those are MVPs and champions you just mentioned, he ain't there yet. But he's certainly playing like a superstar in this playoffs," one Twitter user replied.

"When healthy, definitely a Tier 1 player. Reminds me so much of Dwayne Wade it’s scary," another wrote.

In fact, Wade and Mitchell appear to have some form of mentor relationship. Wade recently bought a stake in the Jazz ownership and has been working closely with majority owner Ryan Smith, who bought the team in late 2020.

And in the 2021 playoffs, many have noticed the retired Miami Heat superstar appearing to give the young two-time All-Star some pointers during breaks in the game from his courtside seat next to Smith.

"His name is gonna be in the MVP conv one day!" another Twitter user replied to Johnson's post.

"He's not quite in that company yet, Magic. He definitely looks to be on his way tho," another countered.

And Johnson wasn't the only public figure in the NBA community to make a splash with his praise of Mitchell.

Stephen A. Smith, an ESPN commentator and analyst, said on-air that Mitchell is the best player in Utah Jazz history — even compared to John Stockton and Karl Malone who led their team to the NBA Finals twice in the late 1990s.

While die-hard Jazz fans were likely thrilled to hear Johnson's praise comparing Mitchell to veteran competitors, Smith's claim was received with a bit more resistance.

"Karl Malone is the best player in Jazz history stop the disrespect [sic]," one reply read.

"Recency bias is a cognitive bias that favors recent events over historic ones," another said. "Yes, he's great, but let's talk again in 10-12 years."

READ: Jazz fans excited for Game 3 with some heading to L.A.

The Jazz are currently 2-0 in the Western Conference semi-finals against the Los Angeles Clippers — despite fellow Jazz All-Star Mike Conley having sat for the first two games due to a hamstring injury, and with two players seen as superstars on the opposing team, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, both starting in the series and appearing to be injury-free.