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Everyone is saying it: The Utah Jazz will trade either All-Star point guard Donovan Mitchell or standout center Rudy Gobert.
And why not? The Jazz don’t seem built to get beyond the second round of the playoffs. This year, they couldn’t even get out of the first.
So Mitchell or Gobert would bring the most in return, help the Jazz reshape things and start anew.
But per Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report, it doesn’t appear the Jazz have a desire to do, either. Or at least not trade Mitchell or Gobert. That scuttlebutt may actually be coming from CAA, the powerful sports and entertainment agency that is often mentioned as a starter of NBA rumors.
It just so happens that New York Knicks president Leon Rose is a former CAA agent. His top front office man with the Knicks, William “Worldwide Wes” Wesley, reportedly has been trying to sell the idea of trading for Mitchell to Knicks owner James Dolan.
Nothing wrong with any of that. Teams have opposing players on their radar all the time. But it is fair to say it could be the Knicks who are starting “the Jazz may trade Donovan Mitchell” talk.
But if the Jazz are to trade Mitchell or Gobert, most people around the NBA seem to believe it will be Gobert. Mitchell isn’t likely going anywhere, not unless the Jazz receive a bona fide All-Star in return. That probably won’t happen.
Instead, the Jazz are more likely to hang on to both Mitchell and Gobert, and explore trades around complementary players — such as point guard Mike Conley, or forwards Royce O’Neal or Bojan Bogdanovic. Those players could bring back a decent return without gutting the roster. Conley, by the way, is a CAA client.
On top of everything else, the Jazz are the host team for the 2023 All-Star Game. Word is, team owner Ryan Smith would like to have a couple of All-Stars representing the host team. Mitchell and Gobert are two guys who could qualify.
More than that, though, the Jazz don’t want to go through an entire rebuild, it seems. They feel as if they would like to add to Mitchell and Gobert, not move one to start all over.
That is what is most likely to happen, despite what you hear and read elsewhere.
Follow Sam Amico @AmicoHoops.