As a sellout crowd of 18,203 fans stood to their feet in white Oklahoma City Thunder T-shirts at Chesapeake Energy Arena, a 21-year-old held his composure in a tough environment.
Utah Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell caught the ball off inbounds pass from Ricky Rubio then drove to the hoop against All-Star forward Paul George before spinning to his right for a six-foot floater with 1:33 remaining in regulation.
The confident rookie’s 13th points of the fourth quarter gave the Jazz a late 6-point lead to help Utah steal Game 2 on the road, 102-95, while tying the first round playoff series 1-1.
“Just continuing to be aggressive was just my mindset,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell ended with a game-high 28 points and six rebounds, despite fighting through a left foot contusion as a game-time decision to even suit up.
He connected on just 10 of his 25 attempts but made some key baskets down the stretch to seal the victory.
Through his first couple playoff games, he’s averaging 27.5 points after dropping 27 in the playoff debut Sunday. His 55 points are the most by a guard in his first two postseason contests in NBA history, passing Michael Jordan’s 53 points in 1985.
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