NBA rumors: Jazz general manager refers to Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell as 'foundational pieces'

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Those three deals: Paul George with the Indiana Pacers, Kyrie Irving with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Anthony Davis with the New Orleans Pelicans. All three successfully pushed for trades from their small-market teams in the middle of their contracts. That history, in part, has fueled widespread belief throughout the league that Mitchell's long-term status in Utah is tenuous at best. Several executives from other teams have also speculated that market size matters to Mitchell, a polished pitchman whose endorsement portfolio is headlined by a signature shoe deal with Adidas.
That isn’t the plan, according to several sources — at least initially. The Jazz, according to sources, are committed to building around Donovan Mitchell, which means taking a step back isn’t an option. Utah would like to keep climbing the mountain toward contention, and the Jazz feel like they still aren’t that far off, despite the disappointment of this season.
Mitchell became irate when Elliott determined before Utah's playoff opener that he wasn't ready to return, a decision made after Mitchell had been informed by another member of the team's medical staff that he was cleared and participated in the morning shootaround. Sources say Mitchell, who aggravated the injury later in the first round and was hampered defensively due to his limited lateral quickness the rest of the playoffs, didn't demand Elliott's departure.
Eric Walden: Donovan Mitchell, when asked to put to rest rumors that might ask out of Utah: "My mindset is to win. Right now, I'm not really looking at that. … I'll think about it in a week. Right now I'm not thinking about that."
Earlier in the week, Knicks executive vice president William Wesley and veteran forward Julius Randle sat courtside at the Jazz-Mavericks game in Dallas. Randle is a Dallas native. So it’s not particularly noteworthy that he was at the game. Wesley is one of the most influential members of the Knicks organization. So when he was courtside in Dallas for Game 1 of Jazz-Mavericks, it caught the attention of a few opposing teams. The Knicks have long been linked to Utah’s Donovan Mitchell. If Mitchell asked for a trade from the Jazz, the Knicks would surely be among the teams interested in acquiring the 25-year-old Westchester County native.
The Knicks have also been linked to pending free agent Jalen Brunson. Brunson has helped lift Dallas to a 2-0 series lead with Luka Doncic sidelined due to a calf ailment. Multiple teams are monitoring the situation in Utah. They wonder if the club will undergo significant roster upheaval if they lose to Dallas. That’s partially why the presence of Wesley and Randle courtside drew the attention of a few opposing teams. Some prominent members of the Jazz were surprised and upset to see Wesley sitting courtside for the game, per SNY sources.
As for Mitchell, who has three more guaranteed seasons on his max deal, his public display of dissatisfaction after that ill-fated Clippers game was red meat for the crowd that is convinced he’s unhappy in Utah. This is why with this playoff challenge ahead, that will be impossible to conquer without a shared sense of belief, what happened after Mitchell made those infamous comments mattered so much. According to a source with direct knowledge of the situation, Mitchell privately addressed the team about the “it’s the same shit” comment that so many saw as defeatist and insisted he wasn’t about to give up on this group. His frustration had won that night, even if the Jazz had not, and he made it clear with his genuine, emotional delivery that he had seen the kind of growth with this current group that made his sentiment off-base.
Donovan Mitchell's future with the Utah Jazz is uncertain, and it appears a number of teams have been gearing up to attempt to acquire the veteran guard. "Other teams have been planning to make a run at Donovan Mitchell all season long," ESPN's Tim McMahon said on The Lowe Post podcast (1-hour, 23-minute mark).
“I’m at a point now where it’s the NBA, this is what it is,” Mitchell said. “People are going to write things. If I have to respond every five minutes to a story, then I’m taking away from my teammates, and I’m taking away from my happiness. I love this team, and we want to find a way to win as a group. I’m focused on my team. As long as my teammates and my coaches know my intentions, then that’s what it is. But I’m not going to allow articles to deter me from my main goal. I love this group. So, let’s find a way to do it.”
“I think I’ve reached a point where you’re happy with yourself, first off,” Mitchell told Yahoo Sports. “... But as far as myself with the franchise, I see the articles, but I really address it with my teammates. I’ve seen it. I’m not too stressed about it. I’m not thinking about it. Because for me, it’s about how we can win. “There’s going to be talk whether I say something, whether I don’t say something because that’s how I’ve always been. I’ve always been someone that’s like, ‘OK, they’re saying stuff. Let’s go ahead and lock in.’ I haven’t really thought too much about it. I’m happy right now and just continuing to find ways to win.”
Howard Beck on Jazz: I think they're in trouble. I think they're in trouble because this this thing has run its course and we know there are some tensions that are in that locker room. And I've been told recently that they might be a little worse than we've even been led to believe. And so if this doesn't end well, this postseason and there's no reason to think that it will… (…) Those Donovan Mitchell ‘wants out’ rumors are going to be starting like as soon as the season is over.
The incessant buzz around the league is that there are those in Mitchell’s circle who believe he is too big of a star for Salt Lake City. Further, some say it’s only a matter of time before he joins former Creative Artists Agency agent and current New York Knicks president Leon Rose "They’re a first-round exit from Donovan being in New York," an Eastern Conference scout said.
Brian Windhorst: One of the big reasons why Ryan Smith brought in Dwayne Wade, and yes, Dwyane bought into the team, but I will promise you, he got a very favorable price. (...) I think he got a very sweetheart deal. One of the reasons he did it was Ryan Smith wanted to have Donovan Mitchell stay in Utah for the long-term.
Not only did they make it through being at the center of the COVID-19 chaos, but they brushed off rumors that they wouldn’t be able to repair their working relationship, proved wrong those who doubted they would be able to play together and in some ways became even better players. “It’s really, really hard to get core franchise-level talent in any market, big or small, but it’s exponentially hard to get that level of talent that has a high level of character and competitiveness,” Jazz executive vice president of basketball operations Dennis Lindsey said earlier this week. “As I’ve mentioned before, we’re working to add players of Rudy and Donovan’s physical talent and competitive makeup and so by definition we’re going to want to keep those type of players moving forward.”
No one surveyed said that potential frostiness between the two will be the driving factor in any major roster decisions for the Jazz. "I think it's fine," an Eastern Conference executive said. "The Jazz have no interest in trading either guy, and I don't think it's leading to the breakup of their team."
No one surveyed said that potential frostiness between the two will be the driving factor in any major roster decisions for the Jazz. "I think it's fine," an Eastern Conference executive said. "The Jazz have no interest in trading either guy, and I don't think it's leading to the breakup of their team."
As for Gobert, the Jazz have built their entire identity defensively around his talents. He’s one of the top 15 players in the league. He’s a unique player in the league. It’s imprudent to speculate on who the Jazz can get for either guy, because there aren’t any plans on trading either guy.
Are there any thoughts about trading RJ and first-round draft picks to bring Donovan Mitchell to NY? — Dimos Kyrkopoylos. If Mitchell is placed on the trade block, Rose will be the first to know. Rose recruited Mitchell to CAA before the 20017 draft, though Ty Sullivan became Mitchell’s primary agent. A late lottery pick, Mitchell became an All-Star for the first time in February. Rose would love to have the Westchester product in the Knicks’ backcourt. But after an initial report the relationship between Mitchell and Jazz teammate Rudy Gobert could be “unsalvageable” because of Gobert’s sloppy behavior before the COVID-19 shutdown, steps have been taken to make peace. For now.
The Jazz are trying to win a title with Gobert and Mitchell at the forefront, and would be more prone to trade Gobert than Mitchell. But the Knicks have a lot of assets to throw at Utah, so it’s not inconceivable to build a suitable package of Barrett, their 2020 lottery pick and a one of the two future first-rounders they acquired from Dallas in the Kristaps Porzingis trade.
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.
If Mitchell were to seek a trade from the Jazz, one opposing executive, speculating, said that any Knicks package would probably have to include either RJ Barrett or Mitchell Robinson, and two first-round picks (one of them unprotected). So if you are putting together potential Knicks trade packages for Mitchell, it makes sense to start there. And, obviously, if Utah was trading Mitchell and keeping Gobert, the club wouldn't want to deal for Robinson.
The reality is that the way the Jazz are built, they need both (Mitchell and Gobert). Otherwise, Utah essentially would have to start over. But, yes, whenever there is a distressed asset, it is safe to assume that Pat Riley and the Heat will be sniffing around. Both Gobert and Mitchell will be free agents in the 2021 offseason. But the divorce could come before that. So, if you're the Heat, do you move in advance? And for which? While Gobert is far more of a team component than Hassan Whiteside, would that prove limiting to Bam Adebayo? Mitchell, by contrast, would seem to work for any team.
If Mitchell were to seek a trade from the Jazz, one opposing executive, speculating, said that any Knicks package would probably have to include either RJ Barrett or Mitchell Robinson, and two first-round picks (one of them unprotected). So if you are putting together potential Knicks trade packages for Mitchell, it makes sense to start there. And, obviously, if Utah was trading Mitchell and keeping Gobert, the club wouldn't want to deal for Robinson.
The reality is that the way the Jazz are built, they need both (Mitchell and Gobert). Otherwise, Utah essentially would have to start over. But, yes, whenever there is a distressed asset, it is safe to assume that Pat Riley and the Heat will be sniffing around. Both Gobert and Mitchell will be free agents in the 2021 offseason. But the divorce could come before that. So, if you're the Heat, do you move in advance? And for which? While Gobert is far more of a team component than Hassan Whiteside, would that prove limiting to Bam Adebayo? Mitchell, by contrast, would seem to work for any team.
The Knicks spent much of January quietly canvassing the league for potential Porzingis trades, according to a person familiar with the talks who was not authorized to discuss them publicly. They tried for untouchables such as Utah’s Donovan Mitchell and Sacramento’s De’Aaron Fox and, predictably, were rebuffed.
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August 8, 2022 | 8:04 pm EDT Update
The NBA informed teams Monday that players still need to have either received a primary course of a COVID-19 vaccine or been given a medical clearance from getting one in order to play games in Canada, according to a league memo obtained by ESPN. The memo also states that, should players be ineligible to play in games in Canada, teams must list them as, “Out – Health and Safety Protocols,” and that they will lose their pay for any games missed due to not being vaccinated.
This season, the Raptors will play at least 44 games in Canada: preseason games in Edmonton against the Utah Jazz; Montreal against the Boston Celtics; and Toronto against the Chicago Bulls; plus their typical 41 regular-season home games at Scotiabank Arena and any additional playoff games. The same rules apply both to going to Canada to play in a game, as well as for entering the United States. Anyone playing for the Raptors, therefore, would have to be vaccinated in order to play in any game this season. Last season, the Raptors were fully vaccinated.
A few of Fox’s peers also attended the wedding including Sacramento Kings general manager Monte McNair and Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum. Former Kentucky Wildcats Bam Adebayo and Wenyen Gabriel, who was also Fox’s teammate in Sacramento, attended the wedding. Adebayo and Gabriel were two of the groomsmen at the ceremony.