All eyes were on Rudy Gobert this afternoon as he spoke to the media for the first time since being snubbed from the All-Star game. What followed was an amazing press conference. We’d our players to be candid and show their emotions during interviews, but most of the time you get coach speak and veiled references of what is really going through their minds. Not today. Not with Rudy Gobert.
Rudy grew increasingly emotional speaking with the media about his All-Star snub. Said his mom called him crying. Said he wrote and deleted several messages on social media. Finally, he grew too emotional to speak, and walked off, wiping away tears. pic.twitter.com/UkFX2nUrt8— Eric Walden (@tribjazz) February 1, 2019
Rudy: "I think it’s disrespectful. … All the coaches preach about defense, every day they talk about defense, about what an honor it is to get stops, to win basketball games; and when it’s time to vote, they they’re not able to reward the best defensive player in the game." pic.twitter.com/MJctRhRuLu— Eric Walden (@tribjazz) February 1, 2019
That Gobert press conference was something else... only other scrum that comes to mind with anything close to that level of emotion in it was Kanter's first after being traded and returning to Utah.— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) February 1, 2019
Rudy Gobert: “I’m frustrated. I was surprised. We all know how the league works. I thought there was a chance I would finally make it. I feel disrespected, not only for me but for my team.”— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) February 1, 2019
Gobert: “I won the Defensive Player of the Year, I should have two by the way, and I still am not getting the respect. I would just like to get the recognition.”— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) February 1, 2019
Rudy Gobert: “For all the kids watching, you’re basically telling them that defense doesn’t matter, that winning doesn’t matter.”— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) February 1, 2019
Rudy Gobert leaves his press conference emotional, almost in tears. When asked if he’d still prefer to be named as an injury replacement, he says he would, but “it still wouldn’t be the same.”— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) February 1, 2019
Rudy Gobert showing the type of emotion that all of us show when we experience failure is a sight to see. It’s refreshing. We’ve all been at this low—no matter how much success or failure we’ve experienced up until that point—and it’s an incredible experience to see Rudy Gobert display it and speak so eloquently to it.
While Rudy Gobert may not be an All Star, he’s still one of the league’s most impactful players. The Hawks—whom the Jazz play tonight—are due to be in for the wrong end of a wrathful evening courtesy of Utah’s own Stifle Tower.