Ricky Rubio back in Spain and Minnesota unable to stop him or talk to him? Sounds familiar, and it could happen. Again.
Barcelona officials are considering making an offer to bring back Rubio to round out the squad’s roster, according to mundodeportivo.com (via HoopsHype). Minnesota has no say in the matter and cannot even comment due to the lockout.
FIBA has ruled that NBA players under contract — like Rubio — can get clearance to play overseas during the lockout so long as there is an out in their contract that allows them to return to the NBA when the lockout ends. Barcelona is considering giving Rubio such a contract. Usually, elite European teams have not made that step — they don’t want a player that could leave in the middle of the season, they already draw top talent without having to offer an opt-out.
But Rubio is a special situation, he has played the last few seasons with Barcelona and would blend in perfectly. Rubio struggled with his outside shot last season and lost his starting job, but he still makes sense to Barcelona as a guy they can trust.
For Rubio, he gets to play and make some money, doing so in a situation where he is comfortable.
And if the lockout is as protracted as some insiders fear, he may get to play another entire season for Barcelona.
Rubio will play for Spain this summer at EuroBasket, where the silver medalists from Beijing are favorites to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics.
The time off during the All-Star break did Dwyane Wade some good.
The Bulls guard turned back the clock on Friday night, leading the Bulls with 23 points and topping it off with this dunk that proved to be the dagger, sealing a Chicago win. The Suns were convinced Wade was going to run the shot clock way down before making his move and they lollygagged into position — so he just blew past everyone for the poster slam.
The Bulls won 128-121. Devin Booker led the Suns with 27.
Atlanta’s DeMarre Carroll picked up a deserved flagrant for this foul.
With a couple of minutes left to go in the second quarter, Isaiah Thomas made the steal when DeMar DeRozan lost the ball on a drive, and Thomas was off to the races. Trying to prevent a lay-up, Carroll decided to foul Thomas far from the basket, but did so with a forearm shove that sent Thomas sprawling on the ground.
Thomas got up and had words, as did Jae Crowder.
Carroll got a flagrant and a technical, Thomas and Crowder each picked up technicals for jumping in.
When Stephen Curry wore a headband through the All-Star Game last weekend, West coach Steve Kerr jokingly called him “Seth” all night.
Dallas’ Seth Curry came out of the week-long break playing like an All-Star. He dropped 31 on the Minnesota Timberwolves Friday night, a career high for him. He hit 13-of-17 from the field, including three from beyond the arc, but did a lot of his damage in the midrange.
It wasn’t enough, the Timberwolves got a comfortable 97-84 win behind 27 points from Andrew Wiggins and 26 from Karl-Anthony Towns. Nerlens Noel was not yet with his new team in time to play for the Mavs in this game.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kawhi Leonard scored 21 points despite foul trouble and the San Antonio Spurs shook off the rust from a nine-day layoff to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 105-97 on Friday night for their third straight win.
Pau Gasol added 17 points and 11 rebounds off the bench in his return from a 15-game absence because of a fractured finger. LaMarcus Aldridge had 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Dewayne Dedmon grabbed 12 rebounds.
Blake Griffin scored 29 points for the Clippers, who have dropped consecutive games to the league’s two winningest teams since the All-Star break ended. They lost by 10 points at Golden State a night earlier. The Spurs have the league’s second-best record at 44-13.
Chris Paul added 17 points in his return after missing five weeks with a torn ligament in his left thumb.