Rudy Gobert has agreed to a five-year, $205 million extension with the Utah Jazz, the three-time All-NBA center revealed to ESPN on Sunday.
Gobert, 28, was eligible to earn up to the same $228 million deal that Giannis Antetokounmpo received from the Milwaukee Bucks, but said he took less to give the Jazz flexibility to build the roster.
“I want to win, and I feel like leaving this money on the table for the team just to be able to have better talent around me and Donovan (Mitchell) was really important,” said Gobert. “I want to win, and I believe in this group and I believe in this organization, and I was willing to leave that money on the table for them.”
As for being awarded the largest deal ever given to a center, Gobert said it showed faith from the team.
“It means that they believe in me,” Gobert said. “They believe in what we’ve been building over the years with this whole organization, with coach (Quin Snyder) and all the guys.”
In addition to his All-NBA accolades, Gobert has been named Defensive Player of the Year twice, made four All-Defensive teams and was an All-Star this past season, when he averaged 15.1 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.0 blocks.
The 27th overall pick in 2013, Gobert has averaged 11.7 points, 11.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocks over 474 career games (382 starts), all with Utah.
The Jazz, who went 3-0 in preseason play, open the regular season at the Portland Trail Blazers at 10 p.m. ET on Wednesday.