Donovan Mitchell out for NBA All-Star Game with non-COVID respiratory illness

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell is out of the NBA All-Star Game due to an upper respiratory illness that is not COVID-19, the NBA announced hours before the game on Sunday.

Mitchell, a three-time All-Star, released a statement lamenting the missed opportunity:

"It is a great honor and has always been a dream of mine to be selected as an NBA All-Star. Remorsefully, I will not be able to play in tonight's All-Star Game due to an upper respiratory illness (non-COVID-related). The entire All-Star weekend is a celebration of the basketball community, the fans and the sport I am blessed to play. I'm focused on getting well and back out on the court. Thank you for all the get-well wishes. I can't wait to see the game later today."

Mitchell had been set to suit up for Team LeBron as a reserve, but now it appears the team will be playing a man down. The Jazz, currently in fourth place in the Western Conference at 36-22, will still be represented in the game by Team Durant's Rudy Gobert.

It has otherwise been another strong year for Mitchell, who is averaging 25.7 points, 5.2 assists and 4.2 rebounds per game while shooting a career-high 45.6% from the field and 35.1% from deep.

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) brings the ball up court in the second half during an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets Monday, Feb. 14, 2022, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Donovan Mitchell is out for the NBA All-Star Game. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Kevin Durant will miss game entirely

Also missing from the game will be team captain Kevin Durant, who was already out of the game with an MCL, but will now not be in attendance due to the death of his grandmother. Durant had been set to be honored in a special halftime ceremony during the game as a member of the NBA's 75th anniversary team.