As most of you already know I am a Jazz fan. And any of you that are basketball fans know that Gordon Hayward left the Jazz in an announcement/open letter on July 4. It was hard to hear/read. However, as sad as this is to say, Jazz fans are used to being left and lied to. Derek William, Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver, Derek Fisher, and the list goes on!
Anyway, a friend of mine from Utah wrote an open letter to Hayward and I absolutely loved it. I wanted to share it with you all. Thank you so much Gentry for letting me post your letter. ❤
An Open Letter to Gordon Hayward,
What you did yesterday sucked, man. You lied and were caught. Be truthful. Own your intentions.
We don’t wish you, Robyn, Bernie, Charlie, or even Siber ill-will or harm. It is completely unacceptable that some threatened you and your family, and I don’t consider them a part of Jazz Nation. Oh, and sorry for knowing your children and dog’s names. It’s probably not normal for fans to know that much about their favorite players; except Utah Jazz fans – but you knew that already.
We are devastated that you left but we do not hate you for leaving. We hate the way you lied and strung us along. We hate how you pretended the leak wasn’t real and that you were truly undecided. I know I’m not the only person who wasted my entire day glued to Twitter, ESPN, and Bleacher Report, and I know I’m not the only one who threw my phone down when the official report came at 5:48 PM, saying the same thing it did at 12 PM.
I hope that you realize what yesterday’s charades did to the impression you’ve left on us that was, before that, quite positive. I can’t count how many threads I saw, including my own, saying that we cannot boo you if you chose to leave if it was best for you. The fans you were about to burn were your biggest advocates – but then you lied.
I hate that this is how you left. I hate that I care about you this much and I hate that I let the decisions of a professional athlete affect me like this, but I can’t help it. The Utah Jazz are interwoven into the fabric of my childhood and adulthood, and are a huge part of who I am today.
I want you to know that you won’t get the reception you had here. I know you’re a “Big Three” now, but you will never be lauded and praised like you were here.
And when you’re having an off night, and are 4-13 from the floor, I hope your Boston fans are loyal to you and cheer you on through the less-than-spectacular games. I hope they give you a chance to show them what you’re capable of, like we did.
However, if they happen to be upset with you, or boo you for a poor performance on a bad night on a larger media scale (like you wanted), I hope you remember a few things:
I hope you remember the fans that hated Delonte West for the rest of his career since the day he decided to stick his finger in your ear.
I hope you remember the fans that got upset and protective over our collective “kid brother” when Deron Williams chucked a basketball at your head.
I hope you remember The Pink Grandmas who are in their 70’s and 80’s who wore your jersey to every game and posted a heartbreaking video last night about not wearing it anymore, but nonetheless still thanking you.
I hope you remember the fans who donated thousands of their own money (we don’t make millions – that’s a lot of money for us) for billboards, making you videos, songs, and little kids buying you Gatorade when you were sick.
I hope you remember the junior high aged children who wrote letters to you.
I hope you remember the elite coaches that built around you.
I hope you remember the teammates that followed your vision.
And, most importantly, I hope you remember the 19,000+ people in Salt Lake City chanting your name during your last game here, even though we had just been swept, as you exited the court, visibly emotional.
We know you didn’t ask for any of that. But that’s exactly the point – you don’t need to ask Jazz fans for those things. We are fiercely loyal until the very end. Unfortunately, for both of us, that was July 4, 2017.
The thing is, Gordon, we have the same goal, too: to win a championship. We are sorry you didn’t have as much faith in our team as we had in you.
(Oh, and would you look at that? I managed to write a whole post without anything being leaked to the media).
Goodbye, Gordon. I hope you #TakeNote of this monumental decision.