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Utah Jazz Turned Donovan Mitchell And Rudy Gobert Into 9 Players, 7 First-Round Picks, And 3 First-Round Swaps

Utah Jazz Turned Donovan Mitchell And Rudy Gobert Into 9 Players, 7 First-Round Picks, And 3 First-Round Swaps

The Utah Jazz have put on a front office clinic this offseason. Many teams struggle with letting competitive cores of talent go when their championship window has seemingly passed. After 5 years of playoff disappointment, the Utah Jazz called it quits for their All-Star duo of Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert after losing to the Dallas Mavericks (who played without Luka Doncic in the first 3 games) in the first round of the 2022 Playoffs.

The Jazz realized they needed to break the duo up while their values were at the highest they could be. It started by sending Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves for a haul of 5 first-round picks, Walker Kessler, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Jarred Vanderbilt, and Malik Beasley. Beverley was later traded to the Los Angeles Lakers for Talen Horton-Tucker and Stanley Johnson.

The Jazz moved Donovan Mitchell yesterday to the Cleveland Cavaliers for 5 first-round picks, Collin Sexton, Lauri Markkanen, and 2022 first-round pick Ochai Agbaji. In total, the Jazz turned 2 All-Star players into 10 first-round picks and 9 rotational pieces. 

The draft picks are extremely valuable, considering the number of unprotected picks they received. They got no picks for moving Beverley to the Lakers, but both Gobert and Mitchell got the Jazz 5 picks. The Wolves moved 3 unprotected first-rounders ('23, '25, '27), a pick swap ('26), and a top-5 protected pick ('29).

The Cavs sent over 3 unprotected first-round picks as well ('25, '27, '29) as well as 2 pick swaps ('26, '28). 

With high-potential young players like Collin Sexton, Talen Horton-Tucker, Jarred Vanderbilt, and more, the Jazz are very well-positioned for the future. They could be in the running to land generational center Victor Wembanyama and then construct the team around him. If the situations in either Minnesota or Cleveland go south, the Jazz could reap the benefits by controlling their picks.

This shows how much value a front office can extract from a star player. The Jazz have set themselves up for the long run, while Minnesota and Cleveland can push to contend right now and hope their success sustains itself so as to not give Utah all the benefit.