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Cavs’ Donovan Mitchell Says He Was ‘Tired of Losing in the 1st Round’ amid Game 7 Win | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors

Written by on May 6, 2024

Jason Miller/Getty Images

It has been three years since Donovan Mitchell played in the second round of the playoffs, and he had one thing on his mind as his Cleveland Cavaliers took the floor for Sunday’s Game 7 against the Orlando Magic.

“I’m tired of losing in the first round,” Mitchell said after leading his team to a 106-94 victory, per ESPN’s Kendra Andrews.

“You work too hard. We work too hard. That was my mindset … for me, just be in attack mode. I’m battling through what I’m battling through, but I could battle through it and figure it out, or rehab it for the next three or four months. That’s where I’m at mentally.”

The Cavaliers lost in the first round to the New York Knicks last year. Mitchell was on the Utah Jazz before that, and they lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the first round in 2022.

Yet the five-time All-Star put his team on his back Sunday and finished with 39 points, nine rebounds and five steals despite playing through a knee injury and a slow start. The result was Cleveland’s first playoff-series victory without LeBron James since 1993.

Mitchell went to the second round twice during his tenure with the Jazz. Those first-round victories came in 2018 and 2021, although they were followed by losses in the second round.

It will take quite the effort to avoid that fate for the third time in his career, as the Cavaliers will now face the top-seeded Boston Celtics with a spot in the Eastern Conference Finals hanging in the balance.

Boston will not be at full strength with Kristaps Porziņģis potentially sidelined for the series, but Cleveland will still have its hands full. At least it can take solace knowing Mitchell can carry the team when necessary.

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