Doug Birrell, Longtime Jazz Massage Therapist Passes Away

Mar 7, 2021, 3:13 PM | Updated: 3:22 pm
Doug Birrell - Utah Jazz...
Jazz player Kyle Korver shoots free throws during warm-ups at practice while Doug Birrell watches. Utah Jazz practice between games 2 and 3 of the 1st round of the playoffs series with Denver. Wednesday, April 21, 2010 (Courtesy of Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)
(Courtesy of Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Longtime Utah Jazz massage therapist Doug Birrell has died. The trainer who had been with the team since 1999 was just 51 years old.

Birrell was officially hired by the Jazz in 1999 after spending five years as a privately contracted massage therapist to Karl Malone and John Stockton through the team’s two trips to the NBA Finals.

“Man this one hurts!” Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell said on an Instagram. “Been with the team since before I was born made sure I was good always!!! Love you Dougie Fresh! Rest in Paradise!!!”

Originally from Redondo Beach, California, Birrell was a longtime Utah resident with his wife and three daughters.

“Rest in paradise Dougie,” forward Georges Niang said. “I have no words right now! No one out there like you!! You were simply the best.”

Birrell attended Snow College and the University of Utah before graduating at the top of his class from the Utah College of Massage Therapy in 1993 according to a team media guide.

On Saturday, Jazz center Rudy Gobert wore a custom NBA Jam shirt featuring Birrell after the Jazz victory over the Orlando Magic.

“I can’t believe he [sic] gone,” former Jazzman Mehmet Okur said in a response to an Instagram post honoring Birrell. “Already missed him.”

Prior to his time with the Jazz, Birrell worked with Alta Club’s fitness center through
Body by Banks. He also owned his own massage therapy company, Doug Birrell & Co., LMT.

  • Utah Jazz Scoreboard

  • Utah Jazz Team Leaders

  • Utah Jazz Standings

Utah Jazz

Jordan Clarkson - Utah Jazz...
Ben Anderson

Report: Jordan Clarkson Will Play For Philippines At World Cup Qualifiers

Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson will play for the Philippines at the World Cup Qualifiers according to a report from Sportlando. 
1 day ago
Donovan Mitchell - Danny Ainge - BYU Cougars - USF Bulls...
Ben Anderson

Jazz, Mitchell Deserve Kudos For Low Drama Summer

Both the Utah Jazz and All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell deserve credit for how they've behaved amid a volatile offseason.
1 day ago
Ben Anderson

Jazz Own Three 1st Round Picks In 2023, Is Draft Any Good?

The Utah Jazz rebuild will truly begin in the 2023 NBA Draft, but how good will their three picks be, and how deep is the class?
2 days ago
Trent Forrest - Utah Jazz vs. San Antonio Spurs...
Brian Preece

Former Jazz Guard Trent Forrest Signs Two-Way Deal With Hawks

Entering his third season in the NBA, former Utah Jazz backup point guard Trent Forrest has signed with the Atlanta Hawks.
2 days ago
Brian Preece

Report: Jazz Sign Forward Paris Bass To One-Year Contract

The Utah Jazz made news on Sunday when it was reported that they have signed small forward Paris Bass to a one-year contract.
2 days ago
Ben Anderson

Report: Jazz, Lakers, Knicks Talked Mitchell, Westbrook Trade

The Jazz reportedly discussed a three-team trade involving the Knicks and Lakers designed around Donovan Mitchell and Russell Westbrook. 
5 days ago
Doug Birrell, Longtime Jazz Massage Therapist Passes Away