SALT LAKE CITY — Joe Inglesand Ricky Rubio strolled into the press conference room at Zions Bank Basketball Campus, side-by-side to take their seats in front of a room full of reporters.
The Utah Jazz teammates were prepared for questions from the press during Monday’s annual media day, but Ingles couldn’t resist spreading his light-hearted energy once Rubio was approached in Spanish.
“Oh, my gosh … two people can understand this,” Ingles sighed, before rolling his eyes jokingly. “… You just asked the same question as him but in Spanish.”
But that’s not Ingles being rude. If you’re around Utah’s Australian swingman long enough, you’ll quickly find out he’s the funnyman of the group.
From roasting NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal for his terrible fake Australian accent live on TNT to teasing Rubio about his “pony tail” or hilariously calling his Jazz teammate Royce O’Neale “just as ugly as real life” after he posted his NBA 2K19 look and rating.
Ingles’ social media accounts are unplugged and full of comedy.
“The one with Blake Griffin was funny,” Rubio laughed.
Rubio was referring to his recent Twitter exchangewith Detroit Pistons star Blake Griffin where Ingles amusingly tweeted out “My purple jerseys sold out already?” after the unveiling of the Jazz’s throwback uniforms.
“yeah Michigan is cold. Needed something to burn in my fireplace,” Griffin responded.
“Always knew u wanted my jersey … my clippers one is probably hanging right next to yours in staples somewhere,” Ingles playfully shot back, in reference to their short stint as teammates for the Los Angeles Clippers.
Ingles was ultimately waived by the Clippers in 2014 after appearing in just five preseason games, before signing in Utah. He is coming off his best NBA season in 2017-18 where he averaged 11.5 points, 4.8 assists and 4.2 rebounds while shooting 44 percent from beyond the arc as a pleasant surprise for the Jazz.
His trash talk against Oklahoma City Thunder All-Star Paul George and other viral antics such as welcoming the Houston Rockets MVP into a Jazz huddle made him an unlikely unsung hero during the playoffs.
“We didn’t know exactly what we were going to learn and not learn about this group and some of the performances,” said Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey. “Joe Ingles taking a larger role, both on and off the court.
“Off the court from a leadership standpoint and on the court from a usage standpoint,” he added. “That was a surprise.”
However, it’s no longer astonishing for those close to him. When Ingles is cracking these funny jokes, he says he’s actually being serious in what he thinks at the time.1 comment on this story
“I do it everyday. I can’t keep up with it,” Ingles explained.
He doesn’t have a favorite, but is happy American fans are being exposed to not only his game, but also his Australian sense of humor.
“I guess I enjoy my life. I’m in a very, very fortunate position and I enjoy playing basketball and I just enjoy life,” Ingles said. “I don’t know why everyone gets so stressed about it all the time. I get to throw a ball around for a living and go back to the kids and life is good.”