Utah Jazz

This Date in NBA History (Aug. 17): Donovan Mitchell's 57-point Game 1 explosion against Denver Nuggets

On Aug. 17, 2020 (ET), Donovan Mitchell erupted for a career-high 57 points in Game 1 of the Utah Jazz's first-round series against the Denver Nuggets.

The game-high points tally was a new franchise record in the postseason, eclipsing Karl Malone's tally of 50, and was the third-highest individual in a single playoff game, trailing only Michael Jordan's 69 in 1986 and Elgin Baylor's 61 in the 1962 NBA Finals.

The performance also made Mitchell the youngest player since that Jordan showcase to score 50 or more.

It wasn't just the 57, the 6-foot-1 point guard nearly recorded a triple-double with his nine rebounds and seven assists.

Not to mention the super-efficient shooting as he knocked down 19 of his 33 field goal attempts, 6-of-15 from the 3-point line and a perfect 13-of-13 from the free-throw line.

He scored or assisted on 15 of the team's 31 points in the third quarter, when the Jazz turned a seven-point half-time deficit into a five-point lead heading into the final period.

Then, in the fourth quarter, Mitchell absolutely caught fire. He scored 22 of the team's 32 fourth-quarter points but his heroics weren't enough as the scores were tied after regulation which forced overtime.

Over the final 6:45 minutes of the game, (5 mins of OT + final 1:45 of regulation), Nuggets points guard Jamal Murray took over.

Murray alone outscored the Jazz 18-16 and scored or assisted on 24 of the team's 30 points in that time span. The Canadian finished with a then playoff career-high 36 points and nine assists.

Game 1 would be the first of multiple duels between these young superstar point guards in this series.

The views on this page do not necessarily represent the views of the NBA or its clubs.

More from NBA.com

Jonquel Jones, DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun, WNBA Power Rankings
WNBA Power Rankings: Contenders make way
Gilbert McGregor
Kyle Lowry drives on Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo
Does Lowry addition make Miami better?
Steve Aschburner
Tobias Harris, Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid.jpeg
Fact or Fiction: Pressing storylines facing 76ers
NBA.com Staff
Jaren Jackson Jr., Kevin Porter Jr. and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are among the leading MIP candidates for 2021-22 NBA season
Our picks for this season's Most Improved Player
NBA.com Staff
Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers
Are the 76ers real contenders this season?
Benyam Kidane
Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers), Kristaps Porzingis (Dallas Mavericks), Pascal Siakam (Toronto Raptors)
Simmons among players primed for bounce-back season
Benyam Kidane
More News