Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune recently reported that Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio is scheduled to visit with his surgeon on Monday and hopes to be cleared for contact practice by the time the team concludes its road trip on Wednesday night. While GM David Kahn hasn't put a timetable on Rubio's return, Zgoda writes that it doesn't appear too far off based on the vigorous workouts he's seen the young guard participate in recently. Earlier this month, owner Glen Taylor said he expected Rubio to be cleared by mid-December. With that aside, here is where you'll find more of tonight's odds and ends:
- Leandro Barbosa has thrived as a scorer for the Celtics in limited minutes, says A. Sherrod Blakeley of CSNNE.com.
- Scott Powers of ESPN Chicago takes a look at how Joakim Noah's numbers currently stack up against the Eastern Conference's most productive centers at this point. Without a doubt though, Powers writes, Noah is having his best season yet since being drafted by the Bulls in 2007.
- Paul Coro of AZ Central calls P.J. Tucker the Suns' best find since Goran Dragic. With defenses helping off in addition to two straight games with double figure scoring (11 and 15 points respectively), Tucker has begun to shed the label that he's an offensive liability.
- Keith Schlosser or Ridiculous Upside says that Troy Hudson can use his opportunity in the D-League to garner attention from NBA teams the same way Mike James did last year to earn an opportunity with the Bulls.
- Jon Marks of Sheridan Hoops examines how Kevin Martin has seamlessly accepted his role as a complementary player on a Thunder team which Martin believes is on a "championship level."