Ranked No. 14 – Utah Jazz Center Rudy Gobert
Sports Illustrated Ranks reigning DPOY No. 14 in NBA’s Top 100.
The incomplete list is released chunk-by-chunk, with Donovan Mitchell, Derrick Favors, Joe Ingles and Ricky Rubio previously coming in between 34-60.
Sports Illustrated’s The Crossover, written by Ben Golliver and Rob Mahoney, recently released its Top NBA 100 list for the upcoming 2019 NBA season. Coming in between spots #34 and #60 were four players for the Utah Jazz: Donovan Mitchell, Derrick Favors, Joe Ingles and Ricky Rubio.
To view the entire list and read more from Sports Illustrated, CLICK HERE.
Not gonna lie, this was kind of a surprise for me. I mean, obviously I know he’s this good. I just always assumed that was because I’m a die hard fan.
Nonetheless, it is really really nice to see some national love for the big guy. Prayers up that he stays healthy all year and is able to show us what an entire season of pure and utter dominance in the art of rim defense looks like.
Here’s what Sports Illustrated had to say about our beloved Frenchman:
“Gobert (13.5 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 2.3 BPG) is so imposing that he actually changes the psychology of a game. Opponents with the ball in hand turn their focus inward; you can see confident players talk themselves out of shots they would ordinarily love to take, all for fear of Gobert swatting them away. Many teams will go to amazing lengths to pull Gobert away from the basket—challenging him laterally rather than vertically—but there’s only so much you can do to separate from a 7’1” shot-blocker with Gobert’s instincts. An incredible number of plays will always be in his reach.
His presence provides a sense of order, a way of life. Utah orients its entire defense around Gobert, knowing that he’ll not only influence a ton of shots himself, but give teammates license to apply their own pressure. This has a constricting effect. Passing lanes are tighter. Driving lanes are contested. It’s difficult to even work through your offense against Gobert and the Jazz, much less score. Defenders are emboldened at every turn, channeling Gobert’s confidence. Gobert plays with the sureness of a player who knows exactly what he is. There are no misconceptions to his game—no indulgent post-ups or rash dribble moves. Just no-frills, highly efficient offense predicated on putting as little space between him and the rim as possible. Cutting off his access to the basket is easier said than done; even last season’s Rockets, who switched as capably as any team in the league, couldn’t entirely deny Gobert’s rolls, cuts, and put-backs. There are some things you can never take away from a seven-footer when he’s wholly committed to playing his game.”
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