May 25, 2024

Timberwolves’ Rudy Gobert out for Game 2 against Nuggets

Editor’s note: This story was updated to reflect Rudy Gobert being ruled out for Game 2 against Denver.

DENVER — Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert will miss Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Denver Nuggets, coach Chris Finch said Monday evening.

Gobert had been listed as questionable Monday due to personal reasons. While the Timberwolves did not specify the reasons for his potential absence during the day, it was previously known that Gobert and his longtime girlfriend had been expecting a baby during this postseason. As Gobert told The Deseret News in Salt Lake City in March, he planned on being there for the birth of his first child.

“I would do anything I can to be there,” Gobert said. “I don’t think there’s any debate to have. Coach (Chris) Finch and every guy in this locker room, that’s what I love about them, we have a level of human connection and empathy for one another that I think is really good. And I think all the guys will be literally telling me, ‘Don’t play, go.’ ”

Gobert, a three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, played a massive part in Minnesota’s 106-99 Game 1 win on Saturday, finishing with six points, three blocks and a game-high 13 rebounds. He was one of three Timberwolves big men who slowed down Denver’s two-time MVP, Nikola Jokić, who had seven turnovers and shot just 11 of 25 from the field, including just 2 of 9 from beyond the 3-point arc.

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(Photo of Rudy Gobert and Nikola Jokić: Ron Chenoy / USA Today)