Jazz newbies Sefolosha and Mitchell bond despite age gap

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Several hours before the Utah Jazz took to the court against the Houston Rockets in game five of their Western Conference semi-finals, veteran guard Thabo Sefolosha sat on one of the plush courtside seats and intently watched a few young players engage in a one-on-one game.

Hours later, the Jazz would be on the losing end of both the game and the series, as an impressive Donovan Mitchell-inspired season came to an end. From 34-year-old Sefolosha’s perspective, from both the sidelines and on court, nfl authentic jerseys cheap watching the 21-year-old rookie shine was invigorating.

The Swiss-South African, who had been out since January after knee surgery, told Kwes√©ESPN that the team’s relatively surprising season was a clear indication of future gains: “I think with the talent level that we have… we have Donovan who is super young and he’s going to keep improving.150

“We have Rudy [Gobert} who still has a lot to learn in the game but has already made a huge impact. You go down the line and you see guys that can still improve and are already giving a lot, so I think we definitely have a big margin to improve and it’s an exciting time for sure.”

Earlier this year, Mitchell had told the Salt Lake Tribune that Sefolosha had been a great help to him during his rookie year: “I look to him like, ‘What do you see in the game?’ When you have a guy you can go up to like that, it shows how much he knows and his presence.”

Sefolosha, who arrived from the Atlanta Hawks ahead of the season, expanded on the relationship between himself and Mitchell: “I just try to talk to him about different aspects of the game, whether it’s in between the lines or whether it’s outside of the court.

“I think, with my experience and the way to approach the game, it’s where sometimes it makes a difference, especially as a rookie you come in, you don’t really know what to expect. So I’ve kind of been giving him the perspective that I’ve learned after 12 years in this league.”

Both players, despite their age difference, were in the same boat in being new to Utah though. Despite playing over a decade in the NBA prior to last summer, for the Bulls, Thunder, and Hawks, Salt Lake City was an unknown quantity to Sefolosha and his family.