In a perfect world, Knicks brass long have envisioned flamboyant Spanish
point guard Ricky Rubio winding up in the city he wants to be in: New
But multiple sources within the Timberwolves organization guaranteed Rubio will start his career with the club, not as a Knick.
Minnesota brass is convinced that Rubio will play for the club next
season, when his Barcelona buyout falls to $1 million. NBA teams are
able to pay $500,000 for European buyouts, so Rubio would have to foot
only $500,000 of the bill.
Rubio was drafted with the fifth overall pick in 2008 by the Timberwolves, whom the Knicks visited last night, but he elected to stay in Europe. Knicks sources said it was because Rubio wanted no part of Minnesota. But Rubio was quoted over the summer saying he likes the state.
Knicks European scout Kevin Wilson, who is based in Barcelona, is a longtime friend of the Rubio family.
Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni would love to have LeBron James on his side, but he understands the chemistry issues the 5-4 Heat are going through. The Heat were beat up for a second time by the Celtics in South Beach Thursday night.
"It’s going to take them a while to get it," D’Antoni said before the Knicks’ 112-103 loss to the Timberwolves last night. "The expectations are so high that if they have a bad quarter everybody is going to go, ‘Oooh.’ In time they’ll be a very good team, but it’s going to take them time. You don’t get to be Boston overnight. They got to play together forever. It’s managing expectations. Somehow you have to find a way."
Amar’e Stoudemire seems to detest any talk of the Heat after their superstar trio all spurned the Knicks in free agency and a chance to join him in New York.
"I don’t care about Miami," Stoudemire said at yesterday’s morning shootaround at Target Center.