SALT LAKE CITY – Though the Utah Jazz didn’t have a traditional locker room cleanout Friday, several players from the team took to social media to say goodbye to the 2021-22 NBA season.
The players conducted their last sessions with the media on Thursday immediately following their Game 6 loss to the Dallas Mavericks before leaving Utah for the offseason.
Before they left, many offered their thoughts on their time with the Jazz on Instagram and Twitter.
“When you walk out the storm you won’t be the same person that walked into it,” Donovan Mitchell posted on Instagram.
Mitchell is the face of the Jazz franchise, but rumors circulated throughout the season about whether he’d outgrown the Utah market, and if he’d be happier elsewhere.
“My mindset was to win,” the guard said after Game 6. “Right now I’m not really looking at that.”
“Thank you to everybody for the support and love all year!!” Jordan Clarkson tweeted. “Blessed in so many ways!! until the next ride.”
Clarkson was one of the Jazz most reliable players during the playoffs against the Mavericks and is under contract for another two seasons in Utah.
“I love Utah,” Clarkson said on whether he wants to return next season, “but all that stuff is out of my control.”
Hassan Whiteside was one of the more pleasant surprises for the Jazz this season after signing with the team last summer.
The big man rejuvenated his career and gave the Jazz consistent production at the center position off the bench.
However, Whiteside is a free agent this offseason, and his caption on Instagram felt more like a goodbye than a desire to return to the Jazz next season.
“Utah Jazz Thank you for having me,” Whiteside wrote, “…LEGO OUT.”
Like Whiteside, Danuel House Jr. was one of the Jazz’s few bright spots this season.
The wing signed with the Jazz when many members of the team were struck with COVID, but quickly worked his way into the rotation.
“Dear Utah thank you for accepting The Houstonian,” House Jr. wrote. “thanks for the prayer and the opportunity. Until NEXT TIME!!”
House Jr. is a free agent and didn’t speak to the media after Game 6.
“Man, Utah, the support y’all give is not unnoticed!” Eric Paschall tweeted. “Appreciate y’all love and support!”
Paschall was a fan favorite in Utah but struggled to break into Quin Snyder’s rotation.
The forward is a free agent this summer and didn’t speak to the media after the season.
“Be You, Stay the course through the ups and downs!!” Royce O’Neale tweeted. “Year 5 keep going.”
O’Neale remained in the Jazz starting lineup throughout the season and averaged a career-high 7.4 points, though his rebounding dropped off significantly.
The forward has two years and $19 million left on his contract with the Jazz.
Rudy Gay had the shortest social media message after the season ended.
Gay simply posted two fingers making a peace sign to accompany a photo of him doing the same.
The Jazz never truly found a role for Gay in the lineup, and appear in any of the team’s six playoff games.
Finally, Jazz owner Ryan Smith said his goodbyes to the season.
“Thank you Jazz nation,” Smith tweeted. “Best fan base on the planet.”
With a roster whose combined salaries well exceeded the luxury tax, the Jazz underachieved as a team. It will be up to Smith and the team’s front office to right the ship in the offseason.