Rudy Gobert and Utah Jazz agree five-year, $205m extension
Rudy Gobert has agreed a five-year, $205m extension with the Utah Jazz, the three-time All-NBA center revealed to ESPN on Sunday.
Gobert, 28, was eligible to earn up to the same $228m deal that Giannis Antetokounmpo received from the Milwaukee Bucks, but said he took less to give the Jazz flexibility to build the roster.
“I want to win, and I feel like leaving this money on the table for the team just to be able to have better talent around me and Donovan (Mitchell) was really important,” said Gobert. “I want to win, and I believe in this group and I believe in this organisation, and I was willing to leave that money on the table for them.”
As for being awarded the largest deal ever given to a center, Gobert said it showed faith from the team.
“It means that they believe in me,” Gobert said. “They believe in what we’ve been building over the years with this whole organisation, with coach (Quin Snyder) and all the guys.”
In addition to his All-NBA accolades, Gobert has been named Defensive Player of the Year twice, made four All-Defensive teams and was an All-Star this past season, when he averaged 15.1 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.0 blocks.
The 27th overall pick in 2013, Gobert has averaged 11.7 points, 11.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocks over 474 career games (382 starts), all with Utah.
The Jazz, who went 3-0 in preseason play, open the regular season at the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday.
NBA to allow larger active rosters
With an eye toward NBA players missing games due to the coronavirus pandemic, the league will allow teams to have 15 active players each game this season, two more than previously.
The league’s Board of Governors gave approval to the larger roster on Thursday. Previously, teams were allowed to have 15 players on the roster, but only 13 could be designated as active for a game.
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Teams also retain the option of having two roster spots for players who have been signed to “two-way” contracts, such as prospects from the G League.
In a separate decision, the Board of Governors backed the league’s Competition Committee recommendation to make the coach’s challenge a regular part of league rules.
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In effect on a one-year trial basis a season ago, coaches could ask for a replay review on some calls.
Saying coaches were “receptive to the pilot version,” NBA President of League Operations Byron Spruell added they became more comfortable “with the concept and strategic aspects as the season progressed.”
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A statement from the league said that coaches challenged 633 calls during the regular season, with 281 reversals upon review. In the postseason, 27 of 67 challenges were reversed.
The season is scheduled to start late on Tuesday night with a pair of games, the Golden State Warriors visiting the Brooklyn Nets and the Los Angeles Clippers meeting the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers – watch both live on Sky Sports Arena.
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