MINNEAPOLIS, Minn., July 6, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — Former Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert met Wednesday with the media covering his new team, the Timberwolves, and said he was happy to have a new challenge in Minnesota, but would miss his former Utah home.
“That’s the only team I played for for nine years,” Gobert said of the Jazz. “And you know, I’ve had some amazing memories and I’m really, really grateful for all the time that I spent there and all the great relationships that I’ve built there… it’s my family and, you know, that is never going to change.”
Still, Gobert said he was happy for the new “challenge of coming to a team and, and try to take that team to the next level and, and discover a new state discover a new community…. It’s just an amazing moment for me and every day is gonna be, you know, a lot of excitement to meet new people.”
So far, he’s enjoying the new view.
“I love nature too. It’s different than mountains. It’s more lakes, but it’s still amazing for me, and just really exciting.”
Of his current goal, Gobert said: “I came here to take this team to the Finals.”
Asked by a local reporter why he though Utah was willing to trade him, Gobert he thought the departure of former head coach Quin Snyder was one element, as were recent losses for the Jazz.
“You know, there’s some times there is some, the window for winning is not always big. For us in Utah, that’s kind of what happened. You know, I think the organization felt like that. We had maybe passed that window that we had over the last few years and, and I think there’s still obviously going to be a very competitive team. But they just felt like with all the assets that they could get with me that it was better for them to to go that way.
“And, you know, and I think could potentially be a win-win situation when, you know, they also put me in a great situation to win. And for me, that’s why I’m really grateful for that.”
Gobert said he hopes the new “assets” work out well for the jazz.
“They put me in you on a team that can keep flourishing and hopefully win a championship and, for them, I really hope that they’re going to be able to get better and better and hopefully, you know, get to that stage that we were in a few years ago, even though we didn’t stick around. But we were first in the West. And, you know, I think, you know, it doesn’t happen often. But it’s never it’s never easy….
“You never know what’s right, what’s wrong. And sometimes you’re gonna make decisions. And that’s what they do. And I’m still really grateful for that, and I’m grateful that it put me in a position to win.”
See the full news conference below.