“The market for Ricky Rubio has shriveled,” says The Vertical’s Chris Mannix in a video segment published on Twitter. The 26-year-old point guard’s days in the Timberwolves‘ starting lineup may be numbered since the franchise drafted Kris Dunn fifth overall in the summer, and his poor play early this season has some experts wondering whether the team will look to move on sooner than later. In 20 games with the T-Wolves this season, Rubio has posted just 6.9 points per game on .368 shooting, the latter being perhaps the biggest negative limiting the playmaker’s trade value.
“What NBA team out there actually needs a point guard?” asks Bobby Marks in the same video. “It’s almost like a quarterback in the NFL. Unless you need one, you’re not going to give up the farm to acquire one.”
Elsewhere in the Central Division:
- Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried‘s name has long been mentioned in trade rumors, but the time for a deal is now, writes Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post. “While insisting he does not blame Faried, it’s obvious [head coach] Michael Malone has lost a little faith in his sixth-year veteran,” says Kiszla, “which echoes the turbulent relationship between Faried and Malone’s predecessor on the Denver bench, Brian Shaw.”
- The Jazz were a popular choice to improve this season in the NBA’s annual GM survey, but more recently it has been Utah’s former All-Star point guard Deron Williams singing their praise. “They definitely have an identity now,” says Williams to Tim MacMahon of ESPN. “They have a great mix of youth and then experience, adding Joe Johnson and Boris Diaw and George Hill, guys like that to complement the young guys they have.”
- Russell Westbrook has been on a tear for the majority of the 2016/17 campaign thus far – including a streak of seven consecutive triple-doubles – but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have down days. Sam Amick details the Thunder point guard’s recent “rare and revealing struggles” for USA Today.