Having already missed a large chunk of the 2014-15 season with a severely sprained left ankle, Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio was hit with more bad luck on March 13, suffering another ankle injury.
He returned to action on March 18 against the Toronto Raptors but did not play again after that game, and Minnesota officially shut him down for the remainder of the season on April 4. He's scheduled to undergo surgery early next week.
Continue for updates.
Rubio to Undergo Surgery, Extent Unknown
Sunday, April 12
Rubio is set to have "diagnostic" arthroscopic surgery to determine the extent of his injury, according to Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune. The procedure will take place Monday.
Zgoda provided additional details, along with comments from head coach Flip Saunders:
Wolves coach and chief basketball executive Flip Saunders said the surgery will “clean up” tissue around the ankle and give everyone involved a better look.
“We don’t know how minor or major it is,” Saunders said before Saturday’s 110-101 loss at Golden State in which Wolves rookie Zach LaVine scored a career-high 37 points and Warriors MVP candidate Stephen Curry again dazzled with circus shots and 34 points of his own. “It wasn’t responding the way we’d expect it to respond. We’ll know more after they get in there.”
The Timberwolves announced on April 11 that Rubio will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his ankle:
“We have closely monitored the status of Ricky’s ankle injury during the rehabilitation process. Ricky recently experienced ongoing soreness in his left ankle and it became apparent that it was not responding according to its anticipated timeline for recovery. As part of this process we sought numerous opinions as to the best course of action. Ricky was most recently seen by Dr. Richard Ferkel of the Southern California Orthopedic Institute in Los Angeles and it was concluded that the best option would be to pursue diagnostic arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle.
On April 4, Phil Ervin of Fox Sports North reported head coach Flip Saunders said Rubio would be shut down for the season. Ervin provided more comments from Saunders, who spoke about Rubio's recovery:
Phil Ervin @PhilErvin
Flip says a month of rest should get Ricky back to full health. That means a tweaked offseason schedule.4/4/2015, 4:48:17 PM
On March 18, James Herbert of CBS Sports reported Rubio would return to the court against the Raptors. It was the last game he would play this season.
When healthy, Rubio was a solid playmaker for the Timberwolves this season, dishing out 8.8 assists and scoring 10.3 points per game. While his shooting is still an issue—he hit just 35.6 percent of his shots on the year—he's a key component of a young Timberwolves squad that is trying to find its footing.
The Timberwolves staked a lot of their future on Rubio, signing him to a four-year, $55 million extension about a week before he suffered his first injury of this season. If Minnesota hopes to become a playoff contender in 2015-16 in the loaded Western Conference, it needs Rubio operating at 100 percent health.