Donovan Mitchell: Gobert’s ‘Been Playing Out Of His Mind,’ ‘Deserves To Be An All-Star’
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell said that his teammate Rudy Gobert has “been playing out of his mind” and should be selected an all-star this season.
Mitchell talked up the two-time defensive player of the year when he joined ESPN’s Hoop Streams on Wednesday, January 15.
“He’s been playing out of his mind,” said the Jazz guard about Gobert. “You know defensively he’s a guy we rely on and obviously we all know that but he’s a guy that’s been continuously there, you know, support the backbone type, vocal leader, lead by example.”
Snubbed In 2018-19
Gobert is midway through his seventh NBA season and has yet to been selected as an all-star. The Jazz center’s stats made a compelling case for the big man to reach the all-star game last season.
“We all know what happened last year. I think we all know that he was snubbed of an all-star,” said Mitchell. “We’re just trying to find ways to get him in. I think we really want him in and he wants to be in. He won’t say it but I’ll say it for him. He deserves to be an all-star.”
The Stifle Tower finished the 2018-19 campaign averaging a career-high 15.9 points, 12.9 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 2.3 blocks.
This season, Gobert is posting 14.9 points, 14.5 rebounds (a new career-high), 1.6 assists, and 1.9 blocks through 38 games. Gobert’s boards per contest are No. 3 in the NBA. He is shooting a career-high 67.6 percent which ranks No. 2 in the league.
“Offensively he’s taken his game to new heights,” continued Mitchell. “The biggest thing is he’s just unselfish. Wanna go out there and do his thing. He wants to win, most importantly.”
Gobert alongside Mitchell led the Jazz to the fourth-best start in franchise history through the first 38 games this season with a 28-12 record. Utah is currently on a 10 game winning streak and has won 15 of its last 16 contests.
NBA All-Star Game starters (voted in by the fans) will be announced on Thursday, January 23.
Gobert currently sits outside the top 10 frontcourt players from the Western Conference that are receiving votes.
Mitchell has the seventh most votes out of Western Conference guards.
The Jazz have 7 more games until the NBA announces all-star game reserve players. The reserves are selected by NBA head coaches and will be announced on Thursday, January 30.
Utah plays its 39th game of the season on the road against the New Orleans Pelicans. The Jazz and Pelicans tip-off on Thursday, January 16 at 6 p.m. (MDT).
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