Just finished reading the following at Ball Don't Lie:
It reminded me of something that I had wondered about earlier in the year, which is whether the Raps would be well served to make a play for Rubio. They should have the assets to make it happen but would likely have to give up their first round pick this year to do it. In fact I'm guessing the trade would look something like this:
1st round pick from Utah (top 16 protected)
Toronto's 1st round pick
Probably a throw-in like Alabi or a 2nd rounder in 2012
Rubio and Raps' 1st rounder are more or less an even swap, and Minny dumps Ridnour's bad contract and upgrades to Bayless for the cost of Utah's likely late first round pick (which is probably expendable because they also have Memphis', their own and now Toronto's).
The more I think about it, the more I'm torn. On the one hand, Rubio likely doesn't have NBA athleticism, he continues to struggle with his shot (and likely finishing at the rim, though the article doesn't mention it), and he might never live up to the hype. In a league full of strong, lightning fast point guards, his talent might not be enough.
On the other hand, Toronto could be a perfect situation for Rubio. The article mentions that he wants to play on the east coast and what better fit for a young international player than Toronto? By playing behind Calderon (and possibly Ridnour/Bayless, depending on how things work out), he would have the perfect learning situation to jump into, on a team with low expectations and a lot of young developing talent. The Raps could afford to take it slow with Rubio, letting him put in the hours working on his jumper as DeMar has, with an eye toward taking over the reigns once he's ready rather than throwing him into the fire. Because Rubio doesn't need to work on his feel for the game, just his body and his shot; his natural talent isn't something you can teach, but his skillset needs to be expanded for him to be effective in the NBA. Down the line, he'd fit well with DeRozan, Amir and Ed Davis, and although I hate to say it, could make Bargs deadly in the pick and pop.
As I said, I'm pretty torn. I wouldn't make this trade if the Raps either landed a top-3 pick or found a way to package some assets and take Kyrie Irving, but I expect the raps will likely be picking in the 6th-8th range and I can't see them finding a potential franchise player at that spot in what looks to be a fairly weak draft outside of the top 3ish. Either way it wouldn't get done until the lottery balls have bounced.
So, would you take a gamble on Ricky Rubio?