While everyone seems eager to marry large markets and larger than life superstars, Minnesota Timberwolves teammates Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio are proving stardom can be achieved just as readily by performance on the court. The Timberwolves duo, along with rookie Derrick Williams, represent the greatest contingent of talent Minnesota has sent to All-Star weekend festivities since Kevin Garnett, Tom Gugliotta, and Stephon Marbury in 1997. Some notes on the Timberwolves this All-Star weekend:
- Timberwolves general manager David Kahn took a risk by signing Kevin Love to a four-year extension with an opt-out after three years instead of the five-year maximum. But with Minnesota at 17-17, Love is buying into the Timberwolves, writes Hoops World's Stephen Litel.
- A big reason behind the Timberwolves success is the play of rookie point guard Ricky Rubio, who Suns rookie Markieff Morris said has "dimes for days," in comparing Rubio to Suns point guard Steve Nash (via Stefan Swiat at Suns.com)
- Magic Johnson sees some of his game in Rubio as well, as he tells the Minnesota Star Tribune.
- Lost in all the Timberwolves relative success are the New Orleans Hornets, whose acquired first-round pick from the Timberwolves (via the Clippers) is being devalued with each passing day, writes Benjamin Hoffman of the New York Times' Off the Dribble blog.
- Also from Hoffman's piece is mention of the Timberwolves overcrowded front court situation, with Love set in the rotation and Michael Beasley, Derrick Williams, Nikola Pekovic, Darko Milicic, and Anthony Randolph all vying for minutes. Those are some interesting trade pieces for the Timberwolves to use in building a solid supporting cast.