Mike Conley: Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell Can Handle Themselves as 'Grown Men'

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistApril 17, 2020

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) talks with guard Donovan Mitchell, left, during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons Saturday, March 7, 2020, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
Duane Burleson/Associated Press

Utah Jazz guard Mike Conley is confident that Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell can work out any potential issues they might have.  

Per Andy Larsen of the Salt Lake Tribune, Conley was asked about the relationship between his two teammates: "Between Donovan and Rudy, if they feel a certain way about each other, which I honestly don't think that's the case at all, they're grown men and they handle it. They go out there, compete and try to win. You'd never notice on our end."

Per Sarah Todd of Desert.com, Conley added that “Some of the best players in the world, in our game ever, have disagreed on things or had arguments or fought in practices, whatever it may be, and have went on to win championships and be successful and be brothers for life.”

Reports of a rift between Gobert and Mitchell have come out in the wake of both players being diagnosed with COVID-19 last month. Gobert became the first known COVID-19 case in the NBA when he tested positive for the virus on March 11. 

Per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Jazz players were privately saying that Gobert acted "careless in the locker room" by touching his teammates and their belongings. Gobert also jokingly touched journalists' microphones and recording devices while leaving a press conference on March 9.

The Athletic's Shams Charania, Sam Amick and Tony Jones reported April 10 that the relationship between Gobert and Mitchell "doesn't appear salvageable."

Utah has built its roster around Mitchell and Gobert with good success. In Mitchell's first two seasons, the Jazz won a combined 98 games and made the playoffs both years. The team was 41-23 and the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference when this season was suspended on March 12. 

Gobert and Mitchell are under contract through the 2020-21 season. 

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