Basketball: Rudy Gobert went to Minnesota to win the moon


French pivotal Rudi Gobert, considered at 30 as one of the best defenders in the NBA, is moving from the Utah Jazz to the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he hopes to win his first NBA title.

Joubert finished as MVP of last regular season.

USA Today Sports

At 30, Rudy Gobert will discover only his third team: after Cholet (2010/13) and Utah (2013/22), the ambitious French hub will now defend the colors of the Minnesota Timberwolves with a goal of winning the NBA champion title that makes him dream.

It was revealed on Friday, star journalist DrESPN Adrian Wojnarowski, always well informed The departure of Gobert from Utah State, his side since his NBA debut in 2013, was confirmed Saturday on social networks by the main interested party.

“Utah!!!! I was just a kid from France when I got here nine years ago, but I felt so welcome and supported from day one,” the man who is considered one of the best defenders in the NBA wrote.

“I grew up as a man and as a player before your eyes and thank you for every moment I lived. Utah and its people will always hold a special place in my heart, thank you, the journey continues.” If the Saint-Quentin native doesn’t mention his next destination, it’s a known fact: Minnesota Timberwolves is the one who paid the price for recruiting the NBA’s best three-pointer.

$205 million over 5 years

To receive Gobert, Minnesota has put in the balance no fewer than five players, including experienced player Patrick Beverly and especially four first-round picks in the coming years (2023, 2025, 2027 and 2029). Regular season best player (14.7 per game), Gobert (2.16m), must make up a great pair of Timberwolves alongside another top-tier interior, Karl-Anthony Towns.

With Towns signing a new four-year, €224 million contract on Friday with Minnesota guard Anthony Edwards, first choice for the 2020 draft and thus Joubert, the Timberwolves could do some damage in the conference. West of the next season, which begins on October 18.

In Minnesota, Rudy Gobert will form a surprising duet with Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns (left).

In Minnesota, Rudy Gobert will form a surprising duet with Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns (left).

Without Joubert, the franchise created in 1989 and never rewarded with an NBA title, was eliminated in the first round of the 2022 playoffs by Memphis. Exactly the same result as Utah, eliminated by Dallas.

Since Gobert’s arrival, the Salt Lake City franchise has certainly become a stronghold of the Western Conference, but it’s still chasing the NBA title and regularly facing its glass ceiling, conference semi-finalists as in 2017, 2018 and 2021.

After this new failure in the spring, the leaders realized that their team was at the end of the course and fired Quinn Snyder, their coach since 2014 with whom Joubert had been close, before he subsequently parted ways with Gubzilla.

stormy relationships

A decision that seemed inevitable as relationships on and off the field with the team’s co-star Donovan Mitchell have become a storm since the event in March 2020.

Joubert then became the first NBA player to test positive for the Covid-19 virus, after voluntarily touching microphones in the press room. His positive test precipitated the suspension of the NBA season and put an end to his relationship with Donovan Mitchell, who was quickly injured.

Minnesota is popular with bookmakers

Entering the second year of his mega contract signed in December 2020 ($205 million over 5 years) which guarantees him a yearly salary of over $38 million in his new jersey, Joubert is still chasing his first title. Try to forget Utah’s disappointments in the arctic cold of Minnesota.

His arrival already caused a reaction from the bookmakers in Las Vegas: his new team’s odds for the 2023 title fell from 80 to 1 to 50 to 1, while Utah’s chances fell from 50 to 1 to 100 to 1. ..

(France Press agency)

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