NBA Roundtable

Ricky Staying In Spain

In Draft, General NBA on September 3, 2009 at 7:00 pm

ESPN reports

Ricky Rubio won’t be coming to the NBA until 2011 at the earliest, sources told Monday.

Rubio and the Minnesota Timberwolves were informed late Monday night in Spain that Rubio’s former club, DKV Joventut, had agreed to trade his rights to FC Barcelona.

Rubio will be able to get out of his Barcelona contract in the summer of 2011, when the fifth pick of last June’s draft will be free to join Minnesota.

The news broke two days ago … and it’s terribly disappointing. Ricky Rubio is one of the most exciting players in world basketball and he would have been delight to watch in the NBA over the next two years. But alas, we’ll have to wait until 2011.

As for the T’Wolves — as I’ve said in the past — in the grand scheme of things this (Rubio staying in Spain for a year or two) is wholly unimportant.

What is of importance was selecting the best talent and the player who could make the most impact on their franchise in the future. When you select a player, especially when you’re a club who’s rebuilding + using a lottery pick, you should be focusing on what a player can do for you over the long haul and not just the immediate future … and Ricky Rubio was an excellent choice by that criteria.


  • Interesting article onTwin stating some of the difficulties Kahn had in trying to get Rubio over (family lawyer, ex-NBA players playing for Barcelona, and his family themselves) … and stating that Kahn did a brilliant job coming as close as he did to landing Rubio.
  • Another article from — Kahn gives Rubio no promises about his status with the club in two year’s time + Flynn now has one hell of a head start of his in-house rival.
  • Chris Sheridan writes — Rubio’s buyout costs $1 million in 2011, an affordable figure, but he may not join the Wolves until 2012 because at that point he’ll no longer be bound by the rookie scale
    • First round draft picks who do not sign a contract within three seasons of their draft selection are no longer required to stay within the rookie scale. Instead, they can sign that player to a contract up to the maximum level (25% of the cap) so long as the team has enough space below the salary cap (this is very important for Tiago Splitter!).
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