Minnesota Timberwolves: The Final Verdict On Ricky Rubio

Timber WolfAnalyst IIJune 20, 2009

BEIJING - AUGUST 10:  Ricky Rubio #6 of Spain shoots a free throw while taking on Greece during the day 2 preliminary game at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in the Beijing Olympic Basketball Gymnasium on August 10, 2008 in Beijing, China.  (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

The Minnesota Timberwolves have the No. 6 pick, and that gives them a chance to draft a variety of players.

Ricky Rubio, the next European-bred star to enter the draft, has the chance to have an extreme impact on any team. Rubio is projected to go anywhere from two through four, so one would ask "why are the Timberwolves in discussion to get him"?

Currently holding the No. 2 pick, the Memphis Grizzlies have no need for either a point guard or a center, which are the positions of the top consensus players in the draft after Blake Griffin, Ricky Rubio and Hasheem Thabeet.

The next possibility is a SG, which O.J. Mayo has wrapped up, and a SF, which Rudy Gay has wrapped up.

Mike Conley is currently the starting point guard for the Memphis Grizzlies. Despite only averaging four assists per game, he will not be replaced by the likes of Rubio.

Conley, during his last three months, posted six assist per game averages. There's a lot of hope for the rookie, and I don't think that the Grizzlies are ready to give up on him due to his late improvement.

There's no way that Hasheem Thabeet will replace Marc Gasol at center for the Grizzlies, because of his average of 12 points and eight rebounds in his rookie year.

He will most likely serve as a backup, and a Thabeet/Gasol lineup would make O.J. Mayo and Rudy Gay have to slow down tremendously.

The Memphis Grizzlies really don't have a need in a lineup, except for a PF (Kevin Love)! In enters the trade rumors....

The rumors are saying that David Kahn is trying to move up in the draft. While David Kahn was being interviewed, he was asked about "making a splash in the draft."

“I hope we’re active," he said. "I hope that we are doing what I said we would do and we’re very aggressive. I know I’ve been on the phones a lot. I don’t know how that stacks up against anybody else.

The confirmation is that yes, he's already stated that he's trying to look at prospects Rubio and Thabeet, as well as Harden. But the other confirmation is that while the Grizzlies only showed interest in Kevin Love as far as trading the No. 2 pick, David Kahn responded with this statement on Al Jefferson and Kevin Love discussing if any players are safe from being traded:

“No, and I’ve told Al (Jefferson) that. Maybe LeBron and Kobe are in that status. I think what I’m trying to say is even Al would say to me, ‘David, if Cleveland calls and offers us LeBron for me, David, you’d better do that.’ Al would say that, right?

"These kids are very bright. They know that. I think what I’m trying to say though is we are not shopping and not seeking to trade Al Jefferson. He is a very important component of this team. And I would even add Kevin (Love) into that mix.”

So very mixed feelings on the trade rumors, however, if the Timberwolves were to trade Kevin Love for the No. 2 pick and filler, then the Wolves would then draft Ricky Rubio, a PG that would be destined for success.


Why Rubio Would Rather Play for Minnesota

Rubio would get no time as a point guard in OKC because Russel Westbrook is there. We all know about Mike Conley, and as far as Washington is concerned, Gilbert Arenas has been healthy for at least half a year, and will be back as good as ever.

The Clippers are self explanatory, and Sacramento just does not have many pieces to work with, and if he's playing next to Kenyon Martin, I don't expect Rubio to get many touches.

In Minnesota, the Wolves starting point guard is Sebastian Telfair, and David Kahn has already stated that he's a good backup.

The starting shooting guard for Minnesota is Randy Foye, who feasts off of catch-and-shoot from the three-point line. Al Jefferson and Kevin Love would definitely benefit from Rubio.

Rubio would also be able to work with stud Rodney Carney, Craig Smith, Ryan Gomes, and Corey Brewer, who all bring massive versatility in defense, inside and outside shooting, and fast break opportunities.

The Sacramento Kings had been the most likely team to cut a deal with Memphis to move into the second spot to take Rubio, but league sources say the Kings’ motivation to do so has waned.

The Kings don’t want to give up Jason Thompson and their fourth pick to get to No. 2, especially considering there’s a chance Rubio could drop to Sacramento anyway.

Fegan has no issues with Rubio in Oklahoma City or Sacramento, but he’ll be difficult if the point guard ends up in Memphis.

Almost nine out of 10 fingers point to Minnesota and David Kahn, despite the Kevin Love statement.


Final Verdict

There is a 50/50 chance Rubio will be in Minnesota. Rubio will get his buyout he needs due to David Kahn's relationship with David Stern, and Rubio will be great for the Wolves due to Foye's shots, and Big Al's post moves.

Thanks for reading.