NBA, Utah Jazz

Rudy Gobert lets us know it’s okay to be a ‘cat guy’

NBA players love their pets and the Utah Jazz’s Rudy Gobert wants you to know it’s okay if that pet happens to be a cat.

Cats are great, and so is the NBA. On the rare occasions those two things intersect, I am overjoyed. Today is one of those rare occasions as Vivint Smart Home, the sponsor of the Utah Jazz’s arena, posted a commercial yesterday featuring Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell, and Ricky Rubio bonding over the shared experience of watching a cat video on Mitchell’s phone.

In the commercial, Mitchell denies being a cat guy, while Gobert assures him that “it’s okay to be a cat guy,” and that there are many cat guys in his native country of France. After another denial from Mitchell, Gobert knowingly smiles and tells him, “Okay,” not appearing to believe Mitchell’s protests, giving a truly compelling and convincing performance. Finally, Rubio goads Mitchell with a meow.

Per NBA Cat Watch, which attempts to track which NBA players own, like, and dislike cats, Ricky Rubio did foster two kittens while in Minnesota. Unfortunately, the site does not have any definite info on Gobert or Mitchell. In June 2015, Gobert was bombarded on Twitter by fans inquiring as to whether or not he owned a cat, but while he commented on the mass of questions, I believe he just kept everyone hanging. As for Mitchell, when he shared the commercial on Twitter, he emphasized yet again, as he does in the commercial, that he is “not a cat guy.” Of course, protest as he does, one cannot deny the smile that seeing that kitten playing with its toy puts on his face.

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On behalf of cat lovers everywhere, I want to echo Rudy Gobert’s sentiment that it is indeed okay to be a cat guy. They are adorable beacons of light and joy, and while there may be a slight stigma regarding loving cats in the NBA, I hope that it soon fades, and that players are no longer compelled to deny their affection for felines out of shame or embarrassment. Perhaps, moving forward, Gobert’s affirmation can go a long way in changing this.

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