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Donovan Mitchell Selected to NBA All-Rookie First Team

by Nick Bolerjack

The NBA announced today that Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell was selected to the 2018 NBA All-Rookie First Team.

The 6-3, 215-pound guard led all rookies this season in scoring at 20.5 points per game and total points (1,616), joining David Robinson (1989-90), Larry Bird (1979-80), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1969-70) and Wilt Chamberlain (1959-60) as one of the last five rookies, and only guard, to lead their team in scoring while their squad won 45-or-more games.

The 21-year-old set an NBA rookie-record for three-pointers made in a season, knocking down 187 on the year, surpassing Damian Lillard, who hit 185 threes as a rookie for Portland during the 2012-13 season. The Louisville product finished the season with two games of 40-or-more points, seven games with 30-plus points and 46 games with 20-plus points, the first rookie since Blake Griffin in 2010-11 to hit those marks.

The Jazz won 11-straight games from Jan. 24 to Feb. 14, with Mitchell becoming the first rookie in NBA history to lead his team in scoring during an 11-game win streak, passing Wilt Chamberlain who led the Philadelphia Warriors in scoring during a 10-game win streak during the 1959-60 season.

Helping the Jazz to the Western Conference Semifinals with a 4-2 First Round series victory against Oklahoma City, Mitchell averaged 24.4 points over 11 postseason games, becoming the first rookie to average over 20 points in the playoffs since Tim Duncan in 1998. He set a Jazz playoff rookie scoring record with 33 points against Oklahoma City on April 23, passing Karl Malone who had 31 points on April 20, 1986 at Dallas and then broke his own rookie record with a 38-point performance against the Thunder on April 27 in Game 6.

Mitchell becomes the seventh Jazz player to earn All-Rookie First Team honors, joining Trey Burke (2014), Deron Williams (2006), Andrei Kirilenko (2002), Karl Malone (1986), Thurl Bailey (1984) and Darrell Griffith (1981).