Cavs’ JB Bickerstaff Says Donovan Mitchell Sitting Out Was ‘Mutual Decision’

Donovan Mitchell was an NBA All-Star again this season and he wants to play at an All-Star level. So if he needs a game off here and there before the playoffs, then so be it.Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers, NBA

Mitchell rested his somewhat bothersome knee again Sunday, when the Cavaliers were playing the second of a Los Angeles back-to-back against the Clippers. He played in Saturday’s loss to the Lakers, one game after the Cavs lost to the Phoenix Suns. He also sat out Tuesday’s win over the Utah Jazz.

They blew a massive lead to lose to the Clippers by a 120-118 count.

Now, the Cavs have just three games remaining, all at home. Odds are, Mitchell will play in at least the next two.

Though coach J.B. Bickerstaff suggested to reporters in LA that the Cavs are being cautious.

“This has been a conversation between myself, him, and our medical staff,” Bickerstaff said. “It’s the thing that we’re most comfortable with. He knows his body more than anybody. He feels like he needs the reps.”

The Cavs (46-33) don’t play again until Wednesday, when they host the Memphis Grizzlies — giving Mitchell and everyone else a couple days of much-needed rest. Or at least no game.

Mitchell, of course, is eligible for a contract extension after the season. But for now, it’s clear he’s focused on the task at hand.

He recently told NBA reporters he would “handle” his future with the Cavs when the time is appropriate. 

“I think the biggest thing for me, as I said before to you earlier, I mean obviously you have to ask the question, but my focus is I got a lot of things to focus on outside of that right now,” Mitchell said, via The Athletic. “I’ve got to focus on myself, getting back for this group, focus on us getting over this stretch, continuing to be ready when it comes time.

“So, I’ll handle that when it comes, and I understand you gotta ask that question and I’ll give you the same answer.”

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