Monte Morris thinks that his opponent may be busting out the ol’ Andrew Bogut Special.
On Thursday, the Denver Nuggets guard called out Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert for setting dirty screens in their first-round playoff series.
“I don’t think all of them are legal,” said Morris of Gobert’s screens, per Mike Singer of the Denver Post.
Morris has been getting extended run in the backcourt in the continued absence of Gary Harris and Will Barton for the Nuggets. That places him squarely in the crosshairs of Gobert, who regularly sets screens to free up the likes of Donovan Mitchell and Jordan Clarkson.
The series is currently tied at 1-1 with Denver getting routed in Wednesday’s Game 2 by a Jazz side still without Mike Conley. As for Gobert, he does not seem to be particularly well-liked by opponents. His screen-setting tactics could be part of the reason why.
Rudy Gobert knows better than most what can happen if one doesn’t take the coronavirus seriously. That doesn’t mean he’s going to be finding much use for the much-discussed NBA bubble anonymous tip hotline.
Gobert said he wants NBA players to be mindful of the rules and regulations within the bubble, but thinks the hotline is “petty” and won’t be helpful.
“I don’t know if someone’s gonna use it, but I think it’s sort of petty,” Gobert said, via Eric Woodyard of ESPN. “At the same time, you want to make sure that people respect the rules.
“But I don’t think the line will really help at that point. I think it’s more about respecting each other and all do it as a small community. Everyone is pretty much educated about the virus at this point and it’s more about respect. At the same time, you want to make sure you socialize and do all those things, but still respecting each other’s space and try to wear the mask inside, especially when it’s crowded.”
The tipline is meant for players to anonymously report their peers for bubble rule violations. The objective is meant to be to hold everyone accountable in the name of safety, but some players will view such an act as snitching.
Gobert may not be interested in using the hotline, but it certainly appears other players have no such reservations.
The relationship between Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert may never be the same in the wake of the circumstances surrounding both Utah Jazz stars testing positive for the coronavirus, but it might be an exaggeration to say the situation impacted their friendship. In reality, Mitchell and Gobert were never close friends to begin with.
ESPN’s Tim MacMahon took a close look at the relationship between Mitchell and Gobert, and what he learned was that there was “friction” between the two long before they both tested positive for COVID-19. The issues are said to be typical for two NBA stars playing together and were described by one Jazz source as “a 2 out of 10 on the NBA drama scale,” but they were magnified when Gobert’s positive test brought the sports world to a screeching halt back in March.
Gobert is often animated with his Jazz teammates when he feels he was open and should have gotten the ball, and there have been numerous examples of that involving Mitchell. Gobert also took a lighthearted swipe at Mitchell during an interview following a home win over the Detroit Pistons on Jan. 14, 2019. The center had 18 points, 25 rebounds and two blocks in the game and was conducting an on-court interview when Mitchell came up behind him messing around. Gobert turned to his All-Star teammate and jokingly told him to “pass the ball, God dammit.”
MacMahon says that remark made many within the Jazz organization uncomfortable, as they knew there was some truth behind it. That type of attitude from Gobert toward Mitchell has created some tension between the two.
“If you take a paper towel and just drip water on it, the paper towel is going to get moist and then it’s going to get damp and eventually it’s going to break,” one Jazz source said. “Rudy has to pick his spots, and Donovan can’t react to everything. Sometimes you have to play chess and appease your teammates.”
Gobert, to his credit, acknowledges that he “can be very annoying.” He also said he is sometimes tougher on Mitchell because he is proud of everything the team has accomplished and wants to hold everyone to a high standard.
“Like with me, people can be hard on me and I can handle it, but for some guys, it can become very frustrating. I can understand that 100 percent,” Gobert said. “Donovan has gotten better every year since he’s gotten here. I think he’s going to keep getting a lot better. It’s pretty much, I’m the a–hole.”
In other words, Mitchell and Gobert were probably never going to spend the holidays together. That is true of a lot of star teammates in the NBA, but the coronavirus situation obviously added to the tension. Mitchell was upset with the cavalier attitude Gobert showed toward COVID-19 before Gobert tested positive, and MacMahon was told Mitchell blamed Gobert for infecting him even if it could not be proven.
Mitchell insists things are fine now between him and Gobert, but the situation will be one to monitor both in Orlando this year and going forward in Utah.
Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell was openly unhappy with teammate Rudy Gobert over the way Gobert acted prior to testing positive for the coronavirus, but Mitchell insists things are fine between the two heading into the resumption of the season.
Gobert was the first NBA player to test positive for the coronavirus, which led to the league and other major sports leagues shutting down. Mitchell tested positive later that day, and he was upset with Gobert for the cavalier attitude the center showed about the coronavirus prior to testing positive. Four months later, Mitchell says things are “good” between the two.
“To be honest with you, I understand that y’all got to ask this question. But you know, right now we’re good,” Mitchell told reporters on Thursday, per Sam Amick of The Athletic. “We’re going out there ready to hoop, um, and I think the biggest thing, you know, that, that kind of sucks was that it took away from the guys on the team, um, took (away) from what the guys on the team were trying to do, and I really wish that, as going forward, you know I think that will be, really, the primary focus, is just us jelling as a team.”
Mitchell was then asked why he chose to let the situation linger for so long rather than addressing it. He said he didn’t want to provide headline material by addressing the same issue over and over again. Mitchell said he only cared about his teammates knowing the truth.
“I wanted my teammates to know that this is how I feel,” he added. “There are moments when you’re just tired of continuing to hear over and over again, and I’m tired of addressing it, kind of going, ‘No, that’s not true’ and ‘No, this is not true’ because then you find yourself all over Twitter trying to call out people for no reason. So I just let it, and addressed it with my teammates.”
Gobert mocked concerns over the coronavirus before he realized he had contracted it. It’s unclear if he passed it on to Mitchell. In any event, the two players appear to have smoothed things over.
The Jazz are 41-23 and seeded fourth in the West.
Time apparently is healing Donovan Mitchell’s wounds.
Mitchell’s Utah Jazz teammate Rudy Gobert became the first NBA player to test positive for the coronavirus, which led to the league’s shutdown in March. Mitchell tested positive a day later and was upset with his teammate for infecting him.
There was some talk early on that the relationship between the two could not be salvaged, though that proved to be untrue.
“Right now we’re good. We’re going out there ready to hoop,” Mitchell said Thursday. “And I think the biggest thing that kind of sucked was that it took away from the guys on the team, took away from what the guys on the team were trying to do and I really wish that as going forward.”
Mitchell seems to be over what happened and focusing on working together as teammates with Gobert.
Gobert mocked the coronavirus prior to learning he had the virus, which led to some annoyance with him. He apologized for his behavior.
The issues seem to be in the past for both players, and now Utah is focusing on performing well in the NBA’s Orlando restart. The Jazz are 41-23 and seeded fourth in the West.
The selections for All-NBA forwards and centers present an interesting dilemma, as they strictly adhere to a two forward, one center format. In today’s position-less pace-and-space era of the NBA, it seems antiquated to require one center per All-NBA team. With the game speeding up and a premium being placed on spacing, there is a significant decrease in demand for traditional centers. Teams like the Houston Rockets don’t even believe in playing a center.
The NBA recognized this shift in basketball ideology by removing positions from the frontcourt of the All-Star ballot and allowing for three frontcourt players of any position to be named a starter. While this was a step in the right direction, no changes have been made to the format of the All-NBA teams, resulting in less deserving players on the All-NBA teams simply due to their position.
With that caveat in mind, here are my selections for the All-NBA forwards and centers. (You can see my 2020 All-NBA guards here)
The tension between Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell apparently has passed.
Utah Jazz executive vice president Dennis Lindsey spoke with local reporters on a video conference call Tuesday. Lindsey said that Gobert and Mitchell are ready to put their issues behind them.
Mitchell had some beef towards Gobert over the coronavirus. Mitchell believed that Gobert acted irresponsibility while unknowingly infected with the virus, which led to Mitchell becoming infected. One report said the relationship between the two could not be salvaged, but Gobert disputed that, and so does Lindsey.
The Jazz were 41-23 before the season was suspended, and Mitchell and Gobert are two of their best players, so there is no reason they shouldn’t try to get along.
Lindsey also told reporters they expect to open the team practice facility soon and that he would like the season to be completed as long as it is safe.
The Jazz were having a nice season and fourth in the West at the time of the season’s suspension.
Rudy Gobert has apologized on numerous occasions for the cavalier attitude he showed toward the coronavirus prior to testing positive for the disease, but that hasn’t stopped the Utah Jazz star from being heckled about it.
Gobert was live-steaming while playing “Call of Duty” on Monday when a member of his party called him out for bringing the coronavirus to the NBA. Gobert fired back by telling the other gamer to “go to school, p—y.” Beware that the video below contains inappropriate language.
Trash talk is just part of the gig when you’re streaming while playing video games, so Gobert is likely used to it. However, he is already having enough issues with his own teammates over what happened back in March, so he probably doesn’t want to hear it while playing “Call of Duty.”
Many pro athletes are big “Call of Duty” fans, and one NBA star even learned about the postponed season while playing the game.
H/T Complex Sports
The Utah Jazz were at the center of the coronavirus pandemic when center Rudy Gobert became the first NBA player to test positive for the virus. That happened in March and led to the immediate suspension of the league’s season.
Not only did Gobert’s positive test lead to the suspension of the season and many other pro sports events to suspend play as well, but it caused an issue within the Jazz.
Gobert’s teammate, Donovan Mitchell, also tested positive for the virus and seemed to be ticked off at Gobert about it.
Even though a report said the relationship between the two was not salvageable, the two players spoke and seemed to work things out.
On top of that, The Athletic’s Tony Jones wrote in a mailbag published Monday that he believes the team and players will make it through this.
Enough time has passed since both players had the virus, and each of them have been cleared. If they can’t work things out — and if Mitchell can’t forgive Gobert more than a month later — than he has some serious maturity issues to overcome.
The Jazz were 41-23 and emerging as one of the better teams in the West prior to the season’s suspension.
Chris Paul had a nice gesture for the Utah Jazz during their uncertain time last month as they awaited testing for the coronavirus.
The Athletic published a story on Friday that had an inside look at the Jazz, whose center, Rudy Gobert, had the first positive coronavirus test in the NBA.
After learning about Gobert’s positive test, the NBA postponed that evening’s game between the Jazz and Paul’s Oklahoma City Thunder. As players stood around uncertain of what the future held, and readying to be tested for the virus, Paul had his security guard go on a beer run for him. CP3 hooked up the Jazz players with beer and wine to help them pass the time of uneasiness.
“One of the best things all night was Chris Paul trying to get us some refreshments, which was great,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder told The Athletic. “That was a nice gesture.”
At that time, the players probably could not have predicted that a nationwide shutdown would ensue, and that the future of the entire season would be in question. But for those scary moments, Paul did what he could to try and help them pass the time.
Paul, 34, is a 10-time All-Star and the president of the players’ union.