There does not appear to be any connection between Mitc…

There does not appear to be any connection between Mitchell’s interests and the ouster of former president Dennis Lindsey. That decision stemmed largely, sources confirmed to B/R, from a rift between the executive and Snyder in which Smith sided with his head coach. Jazz staffers point specifically to Lindsey selecting Udoka Azubuike in the first round of the 2020 draft, as well as other draft additions that failed to make an NBA impact as a main stimulant in the turmoil between the president and Snyder.

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One source with knowledge of the situation maintained Mitchell had no involvement in Wade purchasing a stake in the team. In any case, it's a move many league observers have viewed as a direct attempt by Smith to appease Mitchell, who first formed a strong connection with Wade through their representation at Creative Artists Agency. "It's a little bit of new-owner syndrome, too," said an assistant general manager. "You come in, and you're immediately told, 'The star player, you want them to like you.'"
Brian Windhorst: Dennis Lindsey has done as good of a job as any executive for the last decades in the NBA. He built that team in Utah from scratch in a small market. And the reason he is no longer the president... Some of the stuff that he's saying about why is leaving, I'm sure it's true... is because he got on the opposite side of Donovan Mitchell. If you are on the opposite side of your franchise star, you're just not going to survive. That's just the way it is.
Brian Windhorst: It was an open secret in the NBA that Quin Snyder and Dennis Lindsey had a very poor relationship. Some of this stuff is somewhat known. Some of the stuff is private, but was some classic stuff, you know, coaches not not valuing developing players. You know, snide, you know, backstabbing stuff or whatever. It's endemic in the NBA, it happens.
Dennis Lindsey’s exit from the Utah Jazz’s president of basketball operations chair was more of an ownership decision than Lindsey’s personal one, sources tell The Salt Lake Tribune, as new owner Ryan Smith chose to move on without Lindsey at the helm and selected general manager Justin Zanik as the team’s primary decision-maker.
Lindsey, hired by the Jazz in 2012, selected Snyder to be his team’s head coach in the summer of 2014 after a disappointing season from predecessor Ty Corbin. But in the years that ensued, Snyder and Lindsey’s relationship deteriorated, creating distrust between the pair that impacted day-to-day Jazz operations. The disagreements were numerous, both on and off the court, sources said.
While the relationship between the two men wasn’t as combative this year as it had been at various times in the two’s tenure, thanks at least in part to the success of the team in the regular season, there was a view from some within the organization that a longstanding feud had been settled. “Quin won,” one source simply said.
In Derrick Favors’ first stint with the Jazz, Lindsey was a proponent of starting Favors at the power forward position next to All-NBA center Rudy Gobert, touting that pairing’s defensive acumen. Snyder, meanwhile, struggled with spacing the floor under those lineups.
Snyder joined most of the Jazz’s front office in being frustrated by the selection of Udoka Azubuike with the team’s first-round pick in 2020. The selection, sources said, was made over strenuous disagreement from the team’s scouting department, but Lindsey saw a future in Azubuike’s size and ability to finish around the basket.
Brian Windhorst: Donovan's relationship with the organization was damaged this week. Is it damaged to a point where it can't be repaired? I'm not saying that. Is it something that they'll get past and he will just move on and have just a blip on the radar screen, maybe. Maybe they're in the Finals in two months, and who cares? Maybe they win the next four games, and it's totally forgotten. Okay. But right now, Donovan is hurting.
Andy Larsen: And a key Mitchell quote from Thurs: "I feel like it's kind of been progressing well for like the past two weeks, I want to say. I mean, you're gonna quote me on that, but I could be wrong. But I feel like that's when things started to go in the right way and projecting well."
Mitchell has been out since April 16, longer than was initially expected. After he progressed slowly in the early stages of recovery, Mitchell began to work with his personal training staff on the rehabilitation, sources said. There is hope that more rehab and testing can lead to Mitchell being cleared to play in Wednesday's Game 2, sources said, as the top-seeded Jazz look to even the series with the No. 8 seed Memphis Grizzlies
But in addition to managing the injury, some easing of frustrations may have to take place behind the scenes. That could include new part-owner Dwyane Wade, sources said. Wade has a good relationship with Mitchell and is with the team this week in Salt Lake City. "Sorry y'all... I wish I could say more.... I'll be out there soon!" Mitchell tweeted after the Jazz's 112-109 Game 1 loss.
It wasn’t just who scored the game-winning free throws, it was how he got there that was also fitting. With the clock winding down and the game tied, on a second-chance opportunity, Mitchell drove into the lane, Jrue Holiday hounding him the entire way, and as soon as Derrick Favors’ attention turned toward Mitchell rather than Gobert, Spida dished off to the Stifle Tower and the rest was history. “Hopefully that kind of stops y’all from talking about it to be honest,” Mitchell said of the play and his and Gobert’s recent history. “At the end of the day, we’re basketball players and we go out there and make the right plays and he did a hell of a job today.”
“When everything happened, [Mitchell] was frustrated,” Gobert said. “I was frustrated. I really wanted to make sure that he was fine. It wasn’t really about going into a conflict or arguing. [After time passed], I was able to call him and tell him what was on my mind, and he did the same. I think that’s what men should do. Don’t put the business out there in the media. People were seeing this as something that could destroy the group. I see it as something that could make the group even stronger. If you’re able to come back from that, we won’t be worried about a team beating us or a bad defensive quarter. It gives perspective.”
Gobert has fought the "defensive specialist" label ever since, never more so than this season, when his scoring average dipped for the second time in his seven-year career. The first time was when Mitchell came on board. "Rudy wasn't doing what they wanted him to do at a certain point this season," a rival scout says. "He became enamored with his offense. He's a hard dude to play with. He can only do so much on offense. He's not a particularly skilled player."
A former Jazz teammate concedes Gobert can wear on people but dismisses the idea that he's a malcontent. "Some people get frustrated with Rudy, but he's just French," he jokes. "He's a good guy. But he's focused on being as great as he can be, and he wants to show he can do more than just defense. ... All of us get frustrated when we're missed. [But] there are much worse ... NBA personalities than Rudy. I hate to even comment because I think it's only going to get bad if it's overspeculated in the media. If it's not, they will figure it out and be professional."
In that story, Gobert said he can be “annoying” when it comes to demanding the ball and that he didn’t blame Mitchell for how he responded after both tested positive for the virus. He admitted there had been issues between the two players in the past — and he wasn't blameless. “I was very impressed at how open Rudy was; how he owned certain points,” Lindsey said. “There was a real vulnerability and some self-reflection. I've just seen some real maturity. You know there are some things that we all have to look at ourselves when we get critiqued and I'm not sure I'm good at that at 51 years old. But I was quite impressed that Rudy at 28 could reflect and share how he's felt about a number of things.”
There had long been friction between the two, the kind typical with NBA duos, particularly if those star players are relatively early in their careers -- and especially in a roller-coaster season such as this one for the Jazz, who have basically played .500 ball aside from a 19-2 run in December and January. One high-ranking Jazz source categorized the pre-pandemic issues between the 28-year-old Gobert and Mitchell, 23, as "a 2 out of 10 on the NBA drama scale."
But when their strained relationship following the positive tests lingered in public view for months, it increased the intensity of their issues and put a spotlight on an already-tense dynamic. It's a spotlight that was created because, according to sources, Mitchell blamed Gobert for infecting him with COVID-19.
"You know, I tried to put myself in his shoes," Gobert told ESPN. "There was a lot of fear, and I think more than anything, he reacted out of fear. That's why I don't really blame him. We all have different character; we all react differently. When it's something like that, when he tested [positive] for a virus that we don't know a lot about, it's scary. It was scary for me, and I'm sure it was scary for him. "The most important thing is what you do from there."
The Jazz wanted to start virtual team meetings and workouts, but Gobert told teammates in early April that he wouldn't feel right participating until he had a discussion with Mitchell. A month into the NBA hiatus, Gobert and Mitchell talked. "We told each other what we had to say to each other," Gobert said. "We are both on the same page. We both want to win. We both think that we have a great opportunity, and we know that we need each other. We talked about a lot of things, but the main thing was that we are on the same page and the fact that our team needs us. We can win together. That's the most important thing."
As a smiling Mitchell sneaked up from behind and made some silly sounds, Gobert looked over his left shoulder and delivered a one-liner into the microphone: "Hey, pass the ball, god damn it!" Mitchell, who had 28 points on 21 shots and two assists, laughed and turned toward the tunnel to the Jazz locker room, altering his path to give high-fives to a couple of kids in the courtside seats who were wearing his No. 45 jersey. It was a moment that made many within the Jazz organization uncomfortable. They knew Gobert's quip contained a lot of truth about his feelings on Mitchell's passing.
Gobert rarely hesitates to let teammates know if they miss him when he is open around the rim. He'll occasionally point up during play in animated fashion, sometimes as he is running back on defense, to note that a lob should have been thrown. He'll often air his gripes verbally, during games and again in film sessions. Mitchell hears it the most, simply because as the Jazz's go-to guy, he has the ball in his hands the most. That, according to several Jazz sources, has been the primary irritant in an overall successful partnership.
Some close to Gobert believe this blend of insecurity and vanity is rooted in his experience growing up in France as a gangly kid with glasses. "Part of it is he's always trying to overcome being that goofy kid in high school," a Jazz source said. "It's that constant never enough, which is good, but it's also been bad."
Do we need to be worried about team chemistry? Are Rudy and Donovan on good terms? – Caleb C. The two are on good terms and the team is ready to play. I don’t expect any chemistry issues.

http://twitter.com/spidadmitchell/status/1256987057009852417
While league sources stopped short of referring to the relationship as "irreconcilable," they did confirm that Mitchell remains unhappy with Gobert. That poses a potential problem for the Jazz because Mitchell will enter the fourth year of his rookie contract next season and is eligible to sign a long-term extension. If he doesn't, he becomes a restricted free agent in 2021 and an unrestricted free agent a year later.
On Friday, veteran guard Mike Conley became the latest to stress the point that NBA players are allowed to argue and not get along with one another and still be successful on the court. “Some of the best players in the world, in our game ever, have disagreed on things or had arguments or fought in practices, whatever it may be, and have went on to win championships and be successful and be brothers for life,” Conley said on a video conference with reporters.
“Between Donovan and Rudy, if they feel a certain way about each other — which I honestly don’t think that’s the case at all — they’re grown men and they’ll handle it and they’ll go out there and compete and try to win, night in and night out. You would never notice on our end.”
Tony Jones on the Jazz: They're committed to this core. There's no indication that they're at a point where they're trying to choose between Rudy Gobert or Donovan Mitchell. But at the same time, I mean, the front office knows that there's an issue and the front office knows that there's a significant issue.
Tony Jones on the Jazz: They're committed to this core. There's no indication that they're at a point where they're trying to choose between Rudy Gobert or Donovan Mitchell. But at the same time, I mean, the front office knows that there's an issue and the front office knows that there's a significant issue.
Considering all the efforts the Jazz had taken to educate their players on the matter and to ensure their safety, it’s not hard to see why there would be frustration with anyone who was still downplaying the disease. Now, though, they must find a way to move forward. The Jazz have already begun working on the Mitchell-Gobert relationship, but sources say Mitchell remains reluctant to fix what might have been broken. “It doesn’t appear salvageable,” one source with knowledge of the situation said.
In the two travel days leading into Utah’s game at Oklahoma City, Gobert and Mitchell shared space on a regular basis, sitting near each other on buses and the team plane, according to sources. Still, there’s no way to know if Gobert gave it to Mitchell or if it was the other way around or some other factor. That’s something the team tried to make clear to Mitchell, according to sources. Mitchell also declined an interview request for this story.
There is hope that the relationship will improve over time, and the fact that there could potentially be a lot of time to sort things out could work in Utah’s favor. “I’m confident our team is going to be totally fine,” Ingles said. “I heard Donovan’s response (on GMA), or whatever it was, to that question, and a part of that is on Donovan and Rudy to sort out if he’s frustrated with him or whatever. But I have no doubt when we go back to training, or when our season starts again, our team is going to be what we have been and what we are. … I’m confident our team will be completely fine. The chemistry will be fine.”
On Mitchell telling Good Morning America that he hadn’t talked to Gobert and the perception that their relationship needs mending because of this… I’m confident our team is going to be totally fine. I heard Donovan’s response, or whatever it was, to that question, and a part of that is on Donovan and Rudy to sort out if he’s frustrated with him or whatever. But I have no doubt when we go back to training, or when our season starts again, our team is going to be what we have been and what we are.
Privately, according to sources, Utah hopes the time off does the team well. Neither Mitchell nor Gobert are the type to hold a grudge. Both are affable. And, privately, the Jazz know that they have doused fires before. Teammates everywhere get tired of each other over the course of a long season, and Mitchell and Gobert are no different.
Individually, Mitchell and Gobert, the two pillars of the Jazz organization, are doing whatever they can to aid the Jazz and NBA community during an unprecedented crisis. But collectively, Mitchell and Gobert, and the remainder of the Jazz, will need to take this hiatus to deal with their own crisis.
The reports of recent days have been multiple, and confirmed through The Athletic sourcing: Mitchell has been frustrated with Gobert in relation to his positive test. Those reports first surfaced on Thursday, the day of Mitchell’s positive test, and the day after Gobert became the first NBA player to test positive, which prompted a league-wide shutdown. They continued through the weekend, as Mitchell’s Instagram post stoked the rumors, because some of the wording is seemingly directed at Gobert. They were confirmed on Monday morning in Mitchell’s interview with Good Morning America.
Privately, according to sources, Utah hopes the time off does the team well. Neither Mitchell nor Gobert are the type to hold a grudge. Both are affable. And, privately, the Jazz know that they have doused fires before. Teammates everywhere get tired of each other over the course of a long season, and Mitchell and Gobert are no different. When Mitchell showed poor body language towards Gobert in a December home loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, he realized his mistake and apologized to his big man. After games, their lockers are next to each other and can often be seen talking to each other about what transpired on the floor. They are without question the leaders of this team. They are both accountable to their teammates and to the media.
Just two players—Gobert and Donovan Mitchell—tested positive for coronavirus. Gobert, who only reported symptoms when Utah arrived in Oklahoma City, sources told SI.com, and Mitchell are close, All-Stars who have been teammates since 2018. Oklahoma state health officials acted swiftly after learning of the positive test, the first in Oklahoma City. State officials ordered the testing of all members of the Jazz traveling party, sources say, in an effort to back trace the movements of anyone who tests positive to determine where the infection may have spread.
Gobert publicly apologized for his “careless” behavior in the days before his diagnosis, which included touching the digital recorders of reporters who had placed them in front of Gobert after an interview and reportedly making light of the issue inside the locker room. Mitchell is “extremely frustrated” with Gobert, league sources told SI.com. In an Instagram post, Mitchell said of coronavirus “hopefully people can continue to educate themselves and realize that they need to behave responsibly both for their own health and for the well being of those around them.”
Just two players—Gobert and Donovan Mitchell—tested positive for coronavirus. Gobert, who only reported symptoms when Utah arrived in Oklahoma City, sources told SI.com, and Mitchell are close, All-Stars who have been teammates since 2018. Oklahoma state health officials acted swiftly after learning of the positive test, the first in Oklahoma City. State officials ordered the testing of all members of the Jazz traveling party, sources say, in an effort to back trace the movements of anyone who tests positive to determine where the infection may have spread.
Gobert publicly apologized for his “careless” behavior in the days before his diagnosis, which included touching the digital recorders of reporters who had placed them in front of Gobert after an interview and reportedly making light of the issue inside the locker room. Mitchell is “extremely frustrated” with Gobert, league sources told SI.com. In an Instagram post, Mitchell said of coronavirus “hopefully people can continue to educate themselves and realize that they need to behave responsibly both for their own health and for the well being of those around them.”
ESPN sportscaster Scott Van Pelt and senior reporter Adrian Wojnarowski certainly think so, as they talked about the Jazz and the entire league’s conundrum on Thursday. Van Pelt noted that there seems to a discord between Gobert and the rest of his teammates, following his nonchalant approach to the virus before his diagnosis. Wojnarowski, who broke the story on Wednesday, echoed the same sentiment. “That is an astute observation. The Jazz are fortunate that they don’t have to get back together and start playing games again right now. There’s a lot of work to do to repair relationships not just between Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, but others in the locker room. There’s a lot of frustration with Gobert. He certainly was apologetic today. They got great leadership in Utah. In that locker room, it’s going to be a test to get this team back on track,” Woj said.
Tim MacMahon: Rudy Gobert: "We've got guys that compete, but some of us don't compete. Some of us just think about scoring. That's what it is. ... Coach keeps repeating it: We've just got to compete. We're too nice. Those guys, we know they're going to get calls. We've just got to come out aggressive and ready to fight."
Storyline: Utah Jazz Turmoil?
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