Thursday, January 28, 2010

Checking In on Ricky Rubio

The "regular season" stage of the 2009-10 Euroleague season ended a couple weeks ago, and the "Top 16" stage tipped off on Wednesday. Jay Aych offered a full preview of the Top 16 yesterday, and I thought it was a good time to check in with an updated scouting report on the celebrated no. 5 pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, Ricky Rubio.

Rubio's Regal FC Barcelona squad ran roughshod through the regular-season phase of the Euroleague, with a 10-0 record and a +20.8 point differential. Additionally, FC Barcelona sits atop the table of the competitive Spanish ACB with a 17-2 record in domestic play.

The lads over at Ball in Europe suggested that Barca, with its deep roster of talent, has a chance to rank up with the best Euroleague teams of the past decade.

I've watched six of FC Barcelona's 10 Euroleague games off the DVR over the past couple weeks in order to put this report together, and I have to say they certainly are a fun club to watch, as they play as a true team and they have several NBA-quality players. As of now, they are the best team outside the NBA, and in a 7-game series vs. the Nets... well, who knows.

[Note: FC Barcelona's first Top 16 game, vs. Maroussi, can be seen on ESPN360 live on Thursday at 2:45 p.m. EST, or on replay. This game will also be broadcast on NBA TV on Saturday at 1 p.m. EST.

Here is the complete schedule of Top 16 games which will air on ESPN360. The Panathinaikos-Barca game should be a keeper - those are the two big favorites, with last year's champion (PAO) against this year's dominant force so far (Barca):
- Wednesday, Jan. 27 at 12:15p: Unicaja vs CSKA Moscow
- Thursday, Jan. 28 at 2:45p: Maroussi BC vs FC Barcelona
- Wednesday, Feb 3 at 2p: BC Khimki vs Olympiacos
- Thursday, Feb. 4 at 2p: Real Madrid vs Maccabi
- Wednesday, Feb. 10 at 2p: KK Cibona vs Olympiacos
- Thursday, Feb. 11 at 2:45p: Panathinaikos vs FC Barcelona]


Several players share primary responsibility for FC Barcelona's gaudy record, with Ricky Rubio being one of those, along with vets like Juan Carlos Navarro, Fran Vazquez, Pete Mickael, Terence Morris and Erazem Lorbek. What remains most remarkable is that Rubio is such an impact player after having just turned 19 in October.

Overall, I remain high on Rubio as a prospect overall, though I do find it uniquely challenging to try to project Ricky's NBA future because of these competing factors:

Pro: I believe Rubio truly has the court vision of an all-time great. Stockton, Magic, Nash - name who you want. I think Rubio sees the floor on that level.

Con: Rubio just cannot finish at the basket at all, and he doesn't really score in the lane, either.

Here are some other things my eyes tell me:
-- Beyond his court vision, Rubio has an exceptional basketball IQ, a precocious sense of how to run a team at such a young age.

In many ways, Rubio's style of play is Nash-like. Ricky has a somewhat similar style of probing the defense and his superior vision really stands out in the pick-and-roll - he often finds the player clear across the court who's left open on a tertiary rotation, though he can also deliver the pass to the roll man skillfully.

I've seen so much basketball that I can usually see plays develop a little in advance - Rubio sometimes makes passes that I just don't see coming, and there's almost nothing that makes me more excited as a fan than that. He's good for a 'Wow' play per game.

-- I mentioned Rubio's deficiencies as a finisher and a shotmaker above, and that is where his game diverges from Nash's sharply at this point - those are the most serious weaknesses in his game.

As a standstill shooter, however, Rubio is markedly improved. His shooting form seems more fluid and he has made 40% of his threes in the Euroleague, 46.3% in the Spanish League (he made just 2-12 threes in the 2008 Olympics). That said, he does not appear to have NBA range on his shot as yet - he missed all of the deep threes I saw.

Rubio has also become a good foul shooter, as he's made 24-25 (96%) in the Euroleague, and 84% on the season as a whole.

-- On defense, Rubio really plays the passing lanes well - great anticipation coupled with the long wingspan on his 6-4 frame helps Ricky create steals and deflections.

Rubio did a good job overall staying in front of guards like Terrell McIntyre, Jamont Gordon and Will Solomon, though they were able to get by him at times.

Also, Rubio really needs to improve his pick-and-roll defense, as he continually struggles to get through screens.

-- I do think that Rubio may have trouble staying in front of NBA points given the changes in rule interpretations on the perimeter, though his length will help compensate for disadvantages in speed and quickness.

One thing I wonder in general is if the rule-interpretation changes work against Rubio a little bit. I wonder if he might lose more than others by not being able to use his hands on D, or by not having a game based on sheer speed and quickness on O. Oh well, guys like Steve Nash and Chauncey Billups are still thriving, so it can be overcome.

But again, improved shotmaking would go a long way toward improving Rubio's game.


Ricky's numbers bear out those primary competing factors above. At a glance, his Euroleague per-game statistics are not at all striking:

Rubio averages 6.4 points, 3.2 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.9 turnovers, while shooting 39% from the floor, 40% from three (and just 38% on 2-point shots), and 96% at the line. All together, his shooting numbers equate to an impressive .615 true shooting percentage (TS%), though just a .488 effective field-goal percentage (eFG%), which is not terribly strong.

Consider, though, that Ricky averages just 21 minutes per game (substitution patterns are different in Europe, where teams are more likely to play their entire roster, rather than lean heavily on starters), and consider also that Euro scorekeepers are much stingier in handing out assists (Rubio is actually third in the Euroleague in assists per game, and first in assists per minute). Rubio's Euroleague PER is actually a very solid 22.2.

John Hollinger has a formula for translating Euroleague stats to the NBA which he explains like this:
    • Scoring rate decreases 25 percent
    • Rebound rate increases by 18 percent (there are more missed shots in NBA play)
    • Assist rate increases by 31 percent (Euro scorers are tightwads with assists)
    • Shooting percentage drops by 12 percent
    • Overall, PER drops by 30 percent
Let's go with per-36 minute numbers. Here are Rubio's per-36 numbers in the Euroleague:
11.0 pts, 5.5 reb, 9.7 ast, .390 FG%, 22.2 PER

And here's what Ricky's per-36 minute numbers look like when translated to the NBA:
8.3 pts, 6.5 reb, 12.7 ast, .343 FG%, 15.6 PER

-- Consider that Steve Nash leads the NBA in assists per 36 minutes with 11.8, followed by Chris Paul at 10.6, and Rubio's 12.7 number jumps off the page.

-- Consider also that Kyle Lowry leads NBA point guards in rebounds per 36 minutes with 5.8, followed by Jason Kidd at 5.3 and Russell Westbrook at 5.0, and you start to get a sense of Ricky's nose for the ball as a rebounder, too.

-- Yet, on the other end of the spectrum, consider how bad that .343 FG% is - Trevor Ariza is last among qualified NBA players at .378, followed by Brandon Jennings at .383 and Vince Carter (!) at .390.

-- And that 8.3 points per 36 is really low, too. Out of all NBA players, it would rank 377th, behind notables such as Chris Duhon and Jason Kidd at 8.8.

Of course, these aren't precise numbers, especially based off of a 10-game, 210-minute sample, but it at least should give a sense of how Rubio is at extremes as a passer/ballhawk on one end and as a scorer on the other.


Increasingly, I wonder if Kidd might be the most apt comparison for Rubio.

Let's take a look at selected per-36 minute numbers from Kidd's career. Again, remember that Rubio is just 19. Let's look at Kidd's rookie year, when he was 21, and his 2002-03 season, when he led the Nets to the Finals near his peak at age 29:
Age 21: 12.4 pts, 5.8 reb, 8.2 ast, .385 FG%, 15.1 PER
Age 29: 18.0 pts, 6.1 reb, 8.6 ast, .414 FG%, 22.2 PER

Both players are unselfish with excellent court vision, and are very good rebounders for their position. Even Kidd increased his scoring ability in his prime (though that 18.0 was easily a per-36 career high - he is 13.2 for his career). And Kidd also had great value as a ferocious ball-hawking defender in his prime. Rubio is a disruptive force in the Euroleague passing lanes, but it remains to be seen how that will translate to defensive value in the NBA.

Let's do something similar for a cross-section of other top point guards - Nash, Paul, Rajon Rondo and Derrick Rose. Let's look at their rookie per-36 numbers and their 2009-10 per-36 numbers:

Steve Nash (using second season since he played only 10.5 mpg as a rookie)
Age 23 (2nd year): 14.9 pts, 3.5 reb, 5.7 ast, .459 FG%, 15.6 PER
Age 35 ('09-10): 19.8 pts, 3.4 reb, 11.8 ast, .523 FG%, 23.0 PER

Chris Paul
Age 20 (rookie): 16.1 pts, 5.1 reb, 7.8 ast, .430 FG%, 22.1 PER
Age 24 ('09-10): 19.1 pts, 4.3 reb, 10.4 ast, .505 FG%, 26.6 PER

Rajon Rondo
Age 20 (rookie): 9.9 pts, 5.7 reb, 5.8 ast, .418 FG%, 13.1 PER
Age 23 ('09-10): 13.9 pts, 4.2 reb, 9.5 ast, .534 FG%, 20.0 PER

Derrick Rose
Age 20 (rookie): 16.3 pts, 3.8 reb, 6.1 ast, .475 FG%, 16.0 PER
Age 21 ('09-10): 19.6 pts, 3.7 reb, 5.9 ast, .477 FG%, 17.7 PER

Across the board, it's a consistent message: Rubio appears to be far ahead of the curve as a passer, but well behind it as a scorer, and it seems he is going to have to become a better scorer to become an elite NBA point guard.

Back prior to the draft in June, my personal draft board looked like this:
    1. Blake Griffin
    2. Ricky Rubio
    3. Brandon Jennings
    4. Tyreke Evans
As of now, I would move Tyreke up to no. 2, and all told, I would rate John Wall ahead of Rubio as a prospect, but I would still rate Rubio ahead of any point guard drafted in 2009, including Brandon Jennings and fellow Minnesota draftee Jonny Flynn.


Of course, at the rate FC Barcelona is going, they should get 10 or so more Euroleague games to increase the Rubio sample set. We'll see if he can keep it up as the competition gets tougher, though I should note that Ricky's virtuoso performance of the regular-season phase came in Barca's final game, on Jan. 14 against Montepaschi Siena.

Siena is considered to be a Euro Final Four contender, they are also a perfect 15-0 in the Italian League, and feature former Clemson star Terrell McIntyre, who has made the Euroleague First Team the last two seasons, at the point.

In just 25 minutes, Rubio scored 14 points on 4 shots (2-4 FG, 9-10 FT), with 10 assists, 4 steals, 3 rebounds and just one TO. He led Barca to a run to start the game, and then also on a decisive 11-2 run after he checked in early in the fourth quarter, as Barcelona ended up winning 85-70. Ricky was brilliant.

If you've made it this far, treat yourself to a little Rubio video. First, here's a 10-minute package from said Montepaschi Siena game which focuses on Rubio. It's a thorough look at how Ricky played, and we highly recommend you at least watch the first play, which demonstrates Rubio's flair for the game.

Here's a similar package focused on Rubio and Juan Carlos Navarro for the Siena game from earlier in the season. We recommend the second play, a gorgeous creation.

Finally, here's a quirky one, a truly Nash-like sequence vs. Fenerbahce which didn't result in a bucket but again displayed Rubio's creativity.

I can't wait to get Ricky Rubio over to the league to see what he becomes. For now, I'll savor him on this perfectly balanced FC Barcelona club.


At 3:25 PM, Blogger verde said...

Good analysis, but there are some facts that are ignored. I watched a lot of Rubio games on different levels -EL, ACB, youth c'ships- and he is truly a magnifique player. Can't argue your points about his court vision and scoring ability. Scoring -shooting, mainly- and strength seem like the biggest q marks prior to his NBA days.

But you have to consider that he is European, he didn't have a chance to improve himself in American system consisting of NCAA and high school, where physical aspects and right play are basis, no matter how strong or skilled a player is. At age 16 (, he emerged as the single star of an unbeaten Spanish team, he scored 51 points to complete a quadriple double at the final game vs Russia. He was a star all along, he may be 19 but he is treated as a star and a project for at least five years.

My point is, his per 36 minute stats relying on Euroleague games and comparisons upon that may not be influential. There is no competition for Barca in Euroleague, they may have the deepest and strongest squad, Rubio is playing along one of the great scorers of 1980-born generation, and against some inferior poinr guards who would never have a chance to play in the NBA (likes of Gordon Jamont, Kalnietis, Bobby Dixon) or disorganized teams like Fenerbahce Ulker (I say that from my heart since I'm Turkish and can watch their games as well).

When he comes to the NBA, there will be competition every night, 82 games in 200 days and probably more coming if he succeeds to make the playoffs. He is not prepared for this and will not be since he actually plays in the league. Also, you may need to compare him first to some great European points, who did not make the NBA or made it anyway and but was unsuccessful or did not get significant minutes.

Court vision-wise and passingwise, the best comparison for him is Sarunas Jasikevicius. Jasi had similar court vision, better scoring ability, a considerably thinner squad for most of his career. He has similar physical built (not mentioning the wingspan which is in favor of Rubio's), similar aims and similar successes. Jasi is clearly better with his shooting, range, perfect hands and feel for the game. In addition, Jasi became a Euroleague champion with three different teams, showing his ability to run a team and be a leader. His prime season came in his second year with Maccabi, where he averaged 15.7 points, 5 assists while shooting %54 from the fiels, %52 from 3pt range and %87 from the foul line. But he did not get the minutes, neither in Indiana, nor Golden State. he was a member of 2007 GSW team, that played a run-n-gun, motion type of offense where Jasi is a master at, but he didn't get the PT there, either, even under Don Nelson, who has a perfect feel for good scorers.

The main cons for his failure in the NBA were regarded as his strength, slow feet and inconsistency, which may very well be regarded as Rubio's cons, too.

However, I think Rubio will be far more successful than Jasi was. Because he is selected 5th overall and regarded as a project, even in NBA. Jasi spent 4 years at college in US, was in his prime when he came to Indiana, but definitely not regarded as a player to include in future plans, which is a complete unknown for me. Rubio has a lot to learn and NBA defenses will collapse him for a while -it may be up to 2-3 years until he finds his game- but he is a talent and he should be a key player for Minnesota, regarding even Flynn gets superior minutes. But comparing him to complete point guards like Kidd, excellent scoring guards like Nash, or physical freaks like Rondo? I don't really see him handling a team with average players (Diaw-TThomas-Bell or Martin-Kittles-Van Horn to say) to 50+ wins and carrying the scoring load in clutch.

Hope it helps. This is a great scouting report and I read it with joy. Hope to see them more often, Mr. Haubs!

At 3:25 PM, Blogger verde said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 4:32 PM, Anonymous eddiemex said...

Great work. Nice video of Ricky playing ball in Europe. So you would still rate Ricky ahead of Brandon Jennings as a prospect... I might disagree with you BUT I would love to see them both on an NBA court going against one another. Both are going to be beast in the NBA. Thanks.

At 6:20 PM, Blogger M. Haubs said...

verde: Thanks very much for the extended comment. You certainly raise some fair points.

I'll be very honest that I think Rubio is difficult to evaluate as an NBA prospect because he has such a unique combination of strengths and weaknesses.

One main factor that I think is underrated, and makes me lean in his favor, is his age.

To be such an accomplished player, and to have such a high BB IQ at just 19 years old is truly amazing.

eddiemex: To that point, yes, I give Rubio the edge over Jennings mainly because I think he's far ahead in terms of knowing how to run a team, and both players have a similar weakness in terms of finishing at the rim effectively.

Jennings certainly has physical advantages in terms of speed and quickness, though Rubio has the clear edge in terms of size of length.

I really can't wait for Rubio to make the jump, as I think it's going to be fascinating to watch him develop in the NBA.

At 8:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

rubios a chump he ran back to europe cuz he didnt get on da team he wantd what a loseer stay there by the way brandon jennings going to be way better than rubio go bucks

At 9:11 PM, Anonymous jayng200 said...

I agree with verde on Sarunas Jasikevicius. I saw him play on some awesome Lithuanian teams, and he could really ball. Its too bad he didnt get a good shot in the NBA, always just riding the bench. I felt he shouldve gone to Cleveland instead of Indiana, where he couldve filled in the role Mo Williams is playing for them now. Sadly, he is best remembered by US fans for his passionate cheers from the bench as a Warrior. Hopefully when Rubio goes to the NBA, he gets to succeed where Sarunas and other Spanish PGs have failed.

At 10:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could he be the next Jason Kidd?

At 10:38 PM, Anonymous jn said...

I don't buy the comparison to Sarunas Jasikevicius. Jasikevicius was first and foremost a gifted scorer, while he was a weak defender even in Europe. His lack of lateral quickness and overall speed was dramatically exposed in the NBA, where opposing PGs could abuse him in defense. Ricky Rubio is not a great scorer, much less a shooter of Jasikevicius' stature, but he is much quicker and more active in defense. He may or may not succeed, but he does not resemble Jasikevicius.

At 11:01 PM, Blogger john marzan said...

who plays better defense, rubio or dragic?

i remember one time you (or jay) compared rubio's defense to steve nash's offense. reading your new post, i see that you've downgraded his defensive ranking. not as good as gary payton anymore, right?

At 12:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He has raw talent. Particularly passing and court vision and knowledge. But during the videos, I concentrated on the defense of the the teams he was playing against. My God, if the NBA had a open court style of defense that I saw in those videos, I think Shaq could drive to the basket with ease..;0). No comparision to the composition. It will be interesting to see how Mr. Rubio adjusts to the more physical defensive play of the NBA. I mean, you could drive a semi through some of those holes in the defensive strategy of most European teams. Hopeing for the best, but a bit tentative on what to to really expect from this talented young man.

At 2:44 AM, Blogger Cobo said...

Good article, but this "As of now, they are the best team outside the NBA, and in a 7-game series vs. the Nets... well, who knows." , really lowers its quality.

I'm European, and as far as I'm a BIG believer that TOP basketball players are still better born & made in the USA, it is also true that we do have some perls (as Pau, Dirk, Ricky) but more so that at club levels... any TOP Euroleague team could be giving hard competition in the NBA.

We have no Kobe, no LeBron, no Dwight... and not so many good prospects as KD, Rose, etc... But if you think in a 7 series the actual Nets would have something to say to Barcelona... well, shame for you, really.
Patriostism seem to be playing a role here... a badly understood one. As European as I feel, that doesn't stop me from saying what I said... still no Kobe, no LeBron, no CP3, no Dwight... but you just needed all those to get rid of Spain in the Olympics.

Anyway, apart from that tyring and boring cliche, great study of Rubio and hope we can see what he is really able to do in the NBA as soon as possible.


At 3:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

National teams are a different kettle of fish. Anyway, the Spanish national team had Pau and Marc Gasol and Rudy Fernández, none of whom are currently playing in the Euroleague. Plus Navarro, Raul and Garbajosa who could not stick around.

At 5:28 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

think rubio needs to work on jumping higher, hitting some weights, and working on post moves. give him 3 years with nba coaches and trainers and getting used to the league and its players, and he'll be a top 3 player in the league. remember, jennings didn't put up strong #s his one year over in Europe and now look how good he's doing against NBA players (granted, his FG% is low). rubio will do fine...

At 9:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barcelona's Euroleague group is a very weak one (tantamount to USA's World Cup group). They would not have a perfect record with Panathinaikos, Olympiakos, Real Madrid, or CSKA Moscow in their group. They have yet to face a top tier team in the Euroleague, so it is pretty damn premature to start claiming they are an elite team.

At 10:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Real Madrid? The same Real Madrid they beat in Madrid by 22 (57-79)? Get a grip.

At 2:00 PM, Blogger parepente said...

"He has raw talent. Particularly passing and court vision and knowledge. But during the videos, I concentrated on the defense of the the teams he was playing against. My God, if the NBA had a open court style of defense that I saw in those videos, I think Shaq could drive to the basket with ease..;0). No comparision to the composition. It will be interesting to see how Mr. Rubio adjusts to the more physical defensive play of the NBA. I mean, you could drive a semi through some of those holes in the defensive strategy of most European teams. Hopeing for the best, but a bit tentative on what to to really expect from this talented young man."

Raw talent? he is 19, he already played a olympic final, profesional since 14, you are kidding?

How Mr. Rubio adjusts to the more physical defensive play of the NBA?
I dont see a lot of NBA games, but the few that I see...I dont see a lot of defense there, at least during the regular season, and Jennings didnt drive to the basket so ease last year.....
and finaly , i could not see the videos here, but last time that I saw Rubio and I see him every week, it seams that he is hitting some weights.

At 3:50 AM, Blogger Cobo said...

Of course national teams are completely different... what I stated is that USA needed their really best players to compete against a European nation. I don't know of any NBA team with Paul-Kobe-LeBron-Melo-Dwight on its lineup... and Barcelona may have the compounded talent of a good national team. The suggestion that they may be losing to the actual NJ Nets... I think can only come from a blind patriotism, really.
With all my respect, many NBA fans have work to do in recognizing their own goods without that letting appreciate abroad ones... that's all.
And for the record... Garbajosa and Navarro could have stayed, they just really didn't want to, as strange as it may seem to some of you, as well as Rubio didn't want to risk everything here to go to the NBA.

As hard as it is... there's another world out there.
That, myself repeating, believeing the NBA & USA are still by far the best league and the best basketball country hands down.


At 4:00 AM, Blogger Cobo said...

Oh, by the way... some months ago a reporter wrote a good article about why Jennings didn't excel nor did nothing spectacular here and why he's doing it now in the NBA... it was a very good study of the case and comparison of basketball styles.

For those who say things as that one about how Shaq could drive here, maybe you could try and get some inside about why a lightning Jennings wasn't able to do so.
It's the same style of defense the NBA restricted some time ago, one of the main reasons why the scores are lower in Europe, the one which the USA National Team struggled with.

I just think both are two different concepts of basketball... some players adapt well with the change, some don't. Some excel in one, some in the other... But if you're GREAT you should be able to adapt over time.
That we don't know from Jennings as he spent just a year here and being a teenager... but please... cut the prepotence speech.

At 11:37 AM, Anonymous jn said...

Neither Garbajosa nor Navarro could stick. Garbajosa was a good player then got injured and became a shadow of his former self, and Navarro could not afford to stay on the series of minimum salary contracts he was to be offered.

At 2:39 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 2:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm the one who uploaded the play vs Fenerbahce and this is how I got to this blog.
One thing which I totally disagree about is his range.
He hit lately some 3 pointers far behind the arc - @ASVEL at EL and vs Alicante and @Bilbao at the ACB. All these are recent games which I've seen.
Sorry for my English.

At 2:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm the one who uploaded the play vs Fenerbahce and this is how I got to this blog.
One thing which I totally disagree about is his range.
He hit lately some 3 pointers from far behind the arc - @ASVEL at EL and vs Alicante and @Bilbao at the ACB. All these are recent games which I've seen.
Sorry for my English.

At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a T-Wolves fan I'm excited to see him develop but having to wait 2 years could be a blessing in disguise because his offensive game is pretty pitiful but should improve over the next 2 years.

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At 2:28 PM, Anonymous The Hoops Junkie said...

I tried to read a lot on Rubio leading up to the 2009 NBA Draft, and other than the 2008 Olympics, all I've seen of him are some brief clips. This post was as good as anything I've seen to get a good feel for him as a player through your write-up and the video footage you threw in there. Nice work incorperating the stats and the eye test. Keep up the good work.

At 4:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

NBA fans are totally delusional. Maybe Barca could beat the Nets in a 7 game series? lololololol Any top 8 European club would wipe the floor with the Nets 4-0 EASILY. NBA only fans just make you sick.

As for Rubio, he's just not anywhere near to being as good as the same NBA fans keep insisting. Let him become a top 15 Euroleague point guard before you spend all your time on learning Euroleague just to talk about him. So, so many far better players than him in Euroleague and the USA only focuses on him, very sad.

NBA fans really need to get a clue about basketball because they really don't know anything about it, even about the NBA their knowledge is very lacking. Talking about how great and physical NBA defense is..... Apparently they live back in 1998 still.

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At 4:09 AM, Anonymous jLan11 said...

i'm from philippines and i'm a great fan of mr. rubio. For me,he's such a good player but i wanted to bring it in to the NBA to be developed.

It's true that NBA is very far style of plays than EUROLEAGUE. They are pretty smart and they always play physical offense & defense, far behind EUROLEAGUE. But it's always great to see some different players (european. asian, etc.) They or you were lucky ones because you bring your talents to the next level. You were very fortunate that you can compete with great guys in the NBA.

For mr. Rubio fan, he'll be great and I do believe that he can develop his talent & bring it to the next level. You just have to believe when you're a fan of someone. Some should have to showcase their talent when they're top lottery pick. They are the very fortunate guys when they looked as great guys in the draft. They have to make and make everyone else believes that they deserve to be on that high level of expectations. So for RICKY RUBIO, you have to be greatful that you have that great talent and soon to be developed. So prove to nonbelievers that they're wrong when you were compared to some unsuccesful EUROPEAN players. Compete with some of the great guys in the NBA. Show your talent and show how great you are...

Please make me happy and hope to see you play in the NBA. I really love your style of play and somehow i often think & compare of how you play to mine but, i just grow and never get tall. How i wish i would be like you ..

I always appreciate your because that's how you play. Just play your style of the game and if possible, BRING IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL . BRING IT ON !!!

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