Mitchell won't defend Slam Dunk contest title
Jesse D. Garrabrant / National Basketball Association / Getty

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell has declined to defend his NBA Slam Dunk contest title in Charlotte Feb. 16 as he focuses his attention on a playoff run.

"I loved doing the dunk contest last year and it was a ton of fun, but I also know it takes a lot of focus, practice and preparation," Mitchell said, according to Deseret News' Eric Woodyard. "Right now, my mind is really on helping my team make a deep run (in the) second half of the season. I'm excited though for the weekend, I'm going to be able to be a part of some great events."

There's still a good chance Mitchell represents Team USA in the Rising Stars game on Feb. 15.

Mitchell defeated Larry Nance Jr., Dennis Smith Jr., and Victor Oladipo last year with four high-scoring dunks, totaling 98 points in the first and second rounds.

The 22-year-old has caught fire of late after a slower start to the year, averaging 29.7 points and 5.1 assists in his last seven while leading Utah to six victories over that span.

Mitchell won't defend Slam Dunk contest title
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