NBA: 6 Big winners, 5 unfortunate losers from the first half of the 2023-24 season

Who are the big winners and loser from the first half of the 2023-24 NBA season?
Memphis Grizzlies v Portland Trail Blazers
Memphis Grizzlies v Portland Trail Blazers / Amanda Loman/GettyImages
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Donovan Mitchell - Winner

Toward the beginning of this season, there were real questions as to whether it was time for the Cleveland Cavaliers to break up their core; meaning it was possibly time to part ways with Donovan Mitchell. However, since that moment in which Darius Garland and Evan Mobley both suffered serious injuries, Mitchell has seemingly put the team on his back. Since the middle of December, the Cavs have been one of the hottest teams in the league.

The Cavs have won 16 of their last 19 games and have made a big push up the Eastern Conference standings. They're currently ranked 4th in the East standings and are within shouting distance of the second seed. With the way the Cavs are playing right now without Garland and Mobley, you'd have to imagine that when they return, this is a team that will be able to emerge into that dark horse contender most believed they'd be before the start of the season.

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All in all, Mitchell is doing wonders for his reputation around the league. When he was traded from Utah to Cleveland, there were many doubters about whether he could be a true No. 1 in the NBA. Many of those questions are beginning to be washed out by his success over the last month.