The Wolves and representatives for Ricky Rubio have begun discussions about a rookie scale extension for the point guard, reports Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities (Twitter link). The talks figure to be challenging, Wolfson surmises, with Rubio coming off a disappointing season and the specter of a Kevin Love trade hanging over the heads of the Wolves.
Agent Dan Fegan represents Rubio as well as restricted free agent Chandler Parsons, Wolfson notes, and the Wolves are reportedly mulling a sign-and-trade pitch to Parsons and the Rockets as part of a Love deal if other Love trades don’t develop. Parsons’ stock is high but Rubio registered a career-low 9.5 points per game this year as he failed to show progress as a shooter or scorer in his first full NBA season after injuries curtailed his first two NBA campaigns. He nonetheless continued to show deft passing ability, averaging 8.6 assists against 2.7 turnovers per game.
Former Wolves GM David Kahn left the door open for the Wolves to make Rubio their Designated Player when he refused to give a fifth year to Love when he signed his extension in 2012, but the move has backfired. It seems unlikely that Rubio would receive the maximum salary required in a five-year extension offer. Still, Fegan appears likely to ask for a deal close to the max, with average annual salaries around $15.5MM. The sides have until October 31st to strike a deal, or Rubio will be set for restricted free agency next summer.