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#pounditSunday, June 26, 2022

Jazz eyeing ex-top lottery pick to pair with Donovan Mitchell?

Donovan Mitchell warming up

Dec 7, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) warms up prior to their game against the Memphis Grizzlies at Vivint Smart Home Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Extreme Makeover: Utah Jazz Edition could be underway this offseason, and the team appears to have at least one notable target in mind.

Chris Kirschner of The Athletic reported this week that the Jazz like the game of Atlanta Hawks forward De’Andre Hunter. Kirschner also notes that Hunter, a strong defender, is theoretically what Utah needs to build around guard Donovan Mitchell.

Hunter, a former No. 4 overall pick, is still on his rookie contract and cannot hit restricted free agency until 2023. That means that the Jazz would have to put together a trade package for him.

It might be worth it though for a lengthy 6-foot-8 player in Hunter who shoots 38 percent from deep. Utah has largely lacked an elite perimeter stopper throughout the Mitchell era asides from the undersized Royce O’Neale (who stands 6-foot-4). Recent reports have also suggested that retooling around Mitchell remains the Jazz’s long-term plan.

After a first-round exit in this year’s playoffs, Utah needs to do something to overhaul their now-stale core. Besides the Hawks, several other NBA teams also seem to be in the mix as potential trade partners.

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