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#pounditSaturday, July 2, 2022

Report: Rudy Gobert’s criticism upset Donovan Mitchell’s camp

Donovan Mitchell warming up

Dec 7, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) warms up prior to their game against the Memphis Grizzlies at Vivint Smart Home Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

The Utah Jazz have suffered all season from rumors of discord between the team’s two stars, and further context is emerging now that the team has been eliminated from the playoffs.

The Jazz have sought to build themselves around star guard Donovan Mitchell, but he clearly has not always seen eye to eye with center Rudy Gobert. One instance came earlier in the season, when Gobert contrasted the Jazz with other Western Conference powers. Gobert specifically cited Suns guard Devin Booker for his effort on defense, which some saw as a veiled shot at Mitchell.

Among those who saw it that way were Mitchell’s camp. According to Tim MacMahon of ESPN, Gobert’s comments made Mitchell’s camp “seethe,” and even the Jazz saw it as a calculated reference to their star guard.

With various revelations like these, it gets harder to see how the Jazz can keep their core together. Gobert is one of the league’s best defensive players, but the organization has obviously committed itself to Mitchell. With Mitchell’s long-term future the subject of speculation, moving Gobert on might be one way to freshen up the roster while simultaneously pleasing Mitchell.

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