All-Star center Rudy Gobert may have been cleared of coronavirus, but he is currently facing an uncertain future with the Utah Jazz. Despite the Jazz’s efforts to fix the issue between Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, some people inside the organization believe that their relationship is no longer salvageable. If the Gobert-Mitchell relationship continues to deteriorate until the end of the 2019-20 NBA season, the Jazz could be forced to break up the superstar duo this summer.
One of the teams that is expected to take advantage of the ongoing situation in Utah is the New York Knicks. With their desire to speed up their timeline, Andy Bailey of Bleacher Report thinks that the Knicks should consider trading for Gobert and pairing him with Chris Paul this offseason.
The potential acquisition of Gobert and Paul may not be enough to turn the Knicks into a legitimate title contender, but it would give them a realistic chance of ending their playoff drought in the 2020-21 NBA season.
“Believe it or not, the organization has enough salaries to piece together to bring in both CP3 and one of the game’s premier rim-running and rim-protecting centers. Paul has some experience with the archetype. When they had Paul and DeAndre Jordan, the Los Angeles Clippers were plus-10.4 points per 100 possessions with both on the floor. And DJ’s 2.1 box plus/minus over that span is well shy of Gobert’s 4.0 over the last six years.”
Bailey didn’t mention how the Knicks would be able to acquire Paul from the Oklahoma City Thunder, but he suggested a way that would bring Gobert to New York. In the proposed trade deal, the Knicks would be sending a trade package including Mitchell Robinson, Bobby Portis, Reggie Bullock, and a 2020 first-round pick to the Jazz in exchange for Gobert.
If the trade becomes a reality, it would not only be beneficial for the Knicks but also for the Jazz. In exchange for Gobert, the Jazz would be acquiring a young and promising big man in Robinson who could be their new starting center. Robinson may not be as good as Gobert right now, but he has shown huge potential to become one of the most dominant big men in the league. This season, Robinson is averaging 9.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks while shooting 74.2 percent from the field.
Portis and Bullock may just be salary-cap fillers, but their ability to defend and stretch the floor would be a big help for Mitchell in keeping the Jazz a competitive team in the deep Western Conference. The future draft pick would allow the Jazz to add another young and promising talent, or they could use it as a trade chip to further improve their roster.