Despite averaging career highs in points and rebounds, despite blocking 2.6 shots per game, and despite anchoring a stout defense Utah Jazz, Rudy Gobert was not named as an NBA All-Star reserve on Thursday night. The guy affectionately known as the Stifle Tower, understandably, took the snub pretty hard.
While meeting with the media on Friday morning to discuss missing out on the All-Star Game, Gobert revealed that his mom called him crying after his name wasn’t part of the rest of the reserves, and that in response to the whole thing, he wrote out, then deleted, multiple messages on social media.
“It was a rough night,” Gobert said. “My mom called me crying. It was tough, but it is what it is.”
After answering a question about whether he was still holding out hope to replace someone on the All-Star roster who is injured (“It wouldn’t be the same,” he responded), Gobert was suddenly overcome with emotion in the middle of the next question, covering his face and turning away as the tears began to flow before eventually walking out of the interview.
It’s a heart-wrenching thing to watch, as Gobert has really been excellent this season and is more than deserving of a spot in the game. Making things worse? Gobert, who has yet to make the game in his career, misses out on a $1 million bonus he’d have gotten had he been named to the All-Star team.
A couple members of the Golden State Warriors apparently didn’t feel the same kind of empathy others might after watching the video.
The Jazz and Warriors have never really liked one another, something that is once again illustrated in these tweets. We’ll see if this bad blood manifests itself when the two teams face off on Feb. 12, the last game for Utah sides before the All-Star break.