Rudy Gobert downplayed apparent friction between he and Utah Jazz teammate Donovan Mitchell on Sunday, saying they recently spoke for the first time since Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus and triggered the suspension of the NBA season.
“It’s true that we didn’t speak for a while, but we spoke a couple days ago,” Gobert said in video post to Instagram Live. “We’re ready to win a championship.”
Mitchell, who also later tested positive, had been upset by Gobert’s careless behavior before the center was aware he had been infected. Gobert apologized for not taking the threat of coronavirus seriously and potentially exposing other in an Instagram post hours after Mitchell received the results of his positive test.
On Sunday, Gobert said the Jazz’s pair of All-Stars remain on the same page.
“Relationships are never perfect,” Gobert said. “But at the end of the day, we both want to win. We’re grown men, and we want to win.”
Since the suspension of the season, Mitchell’s only public comments regarding his relationship with Gobert came during a March 16 appearance on ABC’s Good Morning America.
“To be honest with you, it took a while for me to kind of cool off and I read what he said and heard what he said,” Mitchell said when asked by host Robin Roberts if he’d been in touch with Gobert. “I’m glad he’s doing okay, I’m glad I’m well. I’m just really happy, to be honest, Robin, that it wasn’t the whole [team].”
Gobert, who said he received death threats in the days after his positive test, indicated any issues between Mitchell and him had been overblown.
“There’s no fight,” Gobert said. “It’s all about thousands of people are dying every day, and it’s all about what we can do to help, what we can do to bring some positive. That’s what my focus is on now.”