Timberwolves owner says Ricky Rubio not likely to be dealt
It might be time to add Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio to our zombie apocalypse team, because, if the unrelenting trade rumors that continually dog him are any indication, he’s a damn survivor.
In an interview with Sid Hartman of the Minneapolis Star Tribune on Sunday, Wolves owner Glen Taylor said that it’s unlikely the team deals away Rubio.
“I don’t see that as a likely possibility,” Taylor said when asked about a potential Rubio trade. “I just think the coach, everybody, likes Ricky. I think we want him to come in and improve on his shooting. But his other things, he plays defense, he gets assists, he helps the others get better. He has some wonderful qualities.
“I think the coach wants to bring an assistant coach to help Ricky on his shooting,” Taylor continued. “I think that’s where we’re going to start out and go and we’ll see how good Kris Dunn is.”
Minnesota drafted Dunn, a similarly all-purpose floor general with fewer jump-shooting/finishing struggles, at No. 5 overall last month in a move that was widely seen as securing a successor for Rubio at the point guard position. But Rubio, who might be the best all-around playmaker in the league and is a stellar on-ball defender, is a difficult piece to part with, especially given the chemistry he has built over the years with the Wolves’ young hub of talent.
A Rubio trade has seemed imminent now for weeks, if not months. But Wolves management has always been publicly insistent that the Spaniard is not a sitting duck.
With Rubio on a team-friendly contract through 2019, the Wolves would be justified in having Dunn serve as Rubio’s understudy in his rookie season and pick up a few tricks while running the offense for the second unit, then seeing where things stand with Rubio’s future from there.