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‘This is our time right here’: Donovan Mitchell on Jazz bouncing back, the bright side of injury, education and more


The plan all along was to talk with Donovan Mitchell about education and hoops, but not like this.

It’s Wednesday afternoon in these dog days of this brief NBA summer, and the Utah Jazz star is making the media rounds over Zoom with his mother/preschool teacher, Nicole, to discuss their partnership with Clorox and all the admirable work they’re doing together in America’s classrooms. Truth be told, this isn’t the kind of sanitized interview arrangement that I’d typically take part in.

Even if you know the subject fairly well — as was the case here — the odds of having to pull teeth to get any real insight on the basketball side are pretty high because the (understandable) focus is on the charity work. In this instance, though, it just so happens that I have a major soft spot for this particular effort: My wife, Emily, is a longtime middle school science teacher who knows all too well how every extra dollar from the outside can improve the learning environment for all.

So, we would chat and, ultimately, shift the spotlight away from the hardwood and into the education realm for a bit. But as you likely noticed by now, Utah Senate President Stuart Adams beat us to it in a most illuminating way.

In a video that was taken in May but only emerged this past week, Adams blames Mitchell, the Jazz and the NBA at large for hindering his efforts to ban critical race theory in Utah’s public schools. Along the way, of course, he managed to discuss Mitchell’s perspective with the kind of condescending tone that spoke volumes about the makeup of his mind.





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