The Utah Jazz traded Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves this past week for an incredibly impressive haul.
In return for the three-time Defensive Player of the Year, the Jazz got Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Walker Kessler, Jarred Vanderbilt, a 2023 first-round pick, a 2025 first-round pick, a 2026 pick swap, a 2027 first-round pick and a 2029 first-round pick.
Many were stunned by the return given that Utah seemed to be operating from a place of minimal leverage. Everyone knew that they had to get rid of Gobert to appease Donovan Mitchell.
During a press conference with the media this week, Gobert got brutally honest regarding why he believes Utah decided to move on.
“The window for winning is not always big,” he said.
“… I think the organization felt like we had maybe past that window. … I think they just felt like with the assets that they could get with me, it was better for them to go that way.”
Gobert is a three-time Defensive Player of the Year, three-time All Star, and six-time NBA First-Team All Defense member. His credential speak for themselves.
That said, his undoing was ultimately his relationship with Mitchell. It wasn’t that the Jazz felt like their window had closed. For the first half of the year they were one of the top teams in the Western Conference. It was the dysfunctionality that ultimately did them in.
The disharmony between them only grew as the season progressed.
— Game 7 (@game7__) July 8, 2022
Hopefully now with a clean slate all parties involved can move forward in a productive and healthy fashion.
Will Gobert ultimately be able to lead the Timberwolves to postseason glory?
Time will tell.