UTAH JAZZ

ESPN: Conley To Return When Jazz Face Gobert, Timberwolves

Dec 8, 2022, 1:26 PM | Updated: 1:29 pm
Mike Conley and Rudy Gobert vs. Nets...
Mike Conley #10 of the Utah Jazz celebrates a play with teammate Rudy Gobert #27 during a game at Vivint Smart Home Arena on November 12, 2019 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Mike Conley is expected to make his return to the Utah Jazz lineup when they host Rudy Gobert and the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night according to a report from ESPN.

Conley suffered a popliteus strain in his left knee in the Jazz win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday, November 19, and hasn’t seen the floor in the team’s last nine games.

Gobert and the Timberwolves travel to Utah to open a five-game road trip.

Conley Reportedly Back In Jazz Lineup

ESPN’s Tim MacMahon reported that Conley is expected to return to the Jazz after missing nearly three weeks with a strained left knee.

The guard appeared to hyperextended his knee while fighting over a screen against the Trail Blazers, but an MRI revealed that the 35-year-old avoided any major injury.

Conley returned to practice on Monday and said he would go through another session on Tuesday to see how his knee felt before deciding on whether he would play Wednesday night against the Golden State Warriors.

“Each days getting better, today was the first time practicing with contact and stuff,” Conley said. “The last week or so it’s been kind of transitioning from walking, to jogging, to running.”

The Jazz ultimately downed the Warriors in thrilling fashion, though Conley missed his ninth game due to the injury.

With the victory, the Jazz moved to 3-6 in Clarkson’s absence, with the three wins coming in their last four outings.

Conley was averaging 10.2 points, 2.4 rebounds, 7.9 assists, 0.3 blocks, and 1.2 steals in 29.2 minutes per game for the Jazz before the injury.

Timberwolves Struggling After Acquiring Gobert

The Timberwolves have gotten off to a tougher-than-expected start after acquiring Gobert for a handsome sum over the summer.

Minnesota sent the Jazz four future first-round draft picks, three of which are completely unprotected, with the fourth only top-five protected in the summer of 2029.

Additionally, the Jazz landed Patrick Beverley (later traded for Talen Horton-Tucker), Jarred Vanderbilt, Malik Beasley, Leandro Bolmaro, rookie Walker Kessler, and an additional draft swap in 2026.

Gobert’s numbers have dropped across the board in Minnesota as the three-time Defensive Player of the Year is averaging 13.3 points, 11.9 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks 30 minutes per game.

The Timberwolves are just 12-12 on the season and own the 11th-best record in the Western Conference.

All-Star center Karl-Anthony Towns suffered a calf injury earlier this month and is expected to be sidelined for 4-6 weeks.

Jazz vs. Timberwolves Broadcast

The Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves will tip off at 7 pm MT in Salt Lake City. The game will be televised on AT&T SportsNet and can be heard on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. It can also be streamed on DirecTV Stream and FuboTV.

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ESPN: Conley To Return When Jazz Face Gobert, Timberwolves