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Utah Jazz, Ricky Rubio move on from NBA trade deadline

Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder talks to Utah Jazz guard Ricky Rubio (3) during an NBA basketball game at the Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City on Monday, Nov. 26, 2018. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY – It’s not hard to imagine, you’d probably feel some anxiety at your job if you thought your boss may trade you away. That is what happened for Ricky Rubio as he saw his name linked to rumors for the NBA trade deadline.

The rumor was the Utah Jazz may deal Rubio for Mike Conley from Memphis. He dealt with it the best he could. First he started with citing his own sources in rumors about Joe Ingles and coffee.

Then he expressed excitement that he could still get into the Utah Jazz’s practice facility.

About an hour before the NBA trade deadline, Rubio asked if turning his phone on airplane mode counted. Finally the report came that he was not going anywhere and, for now, he remains a member of the Utah Jazz.

In all seriousness, Rubio says he knows the business side of the NBA, that doesn’t mean he really enjoys it. Despite the fun he had on social media.

“It wasn’t fun at all,” Rubio said. “But if you don’t have fun at tough moments, it’s not fun. So do I like it? No. I hate it. It is what it is — move on, move past and keep playing.”

The organization’s social media slogan of #teamiseverything still seems to resonate though with the Jazz’s starting point guard. The rumors had begun to take its toll on the players. They all say they love playing together and are overall happy to keep the roster the same.

“We have a great group of guys,” Rubio said. “I’ve never been on a team where each other has each other’s back. We love each other here. They showed it with me yesterday, we showed it with (Derrick Favors). Teams sometimes upstairs, they don’t feel like chemistry matters but sometimes it matters more than anything.”

Whether the point guard was speaking generally of NBA organizations or to the Jazz’s front office was not clear. However, fans need not worry as this did not change how Rubio feels about Utah.

“I’m here to play basketball, and I love it here,” he said.

Derrick Favors’ name also floated around in rumors. Luckily for Favors he has dealt with that in previous seasons with the Jazz alone. In fact, he called it a normal day for him.

“It wasn’t stressful for me,” Favors said. “I was with my kids yesterday, so it wasn’t as stressful for me. I think, as a team, everybody is happy and relieved just to get that part over with just so you don’t have to think about it no more, just move on with the season.”

The team’s starting power forward did say it seemed most of his teammates were much more relaxed at practice Friday after the whole hoopla that is the NBA trade deadline. It didn’t stop the players from earning a win 116-88 against Phoenix Wednesday.

The Jazz (31-24, 6th in Western Conference) have two more games before NBA All-Star weekend and first up is the San Antonio Spurs (32-25, 7th in Western Conference) Saturday with an early tip-off of 3 P.M.