A hyped point guard is drafted by the Timberwolves and excitement flows through the fan base as a youthful team now has a point guard and power forward to build around for the future. As the power forward is coming into his own, the point guard is having a great rookie year, only increasing the optimism. Let's hope this is where the stories of Ricky Rubio and Stephon Marbury split and go their separate ways, especially in relation to the Wolves.
Marbury went on to hate sharing the spotlight with Kevin Garnett and forced a trade to the New Jersey Nets, from there he put up nice numbers on losing teams until leaving the league, eating Vaseline and playing in China. Wolves fans are already concerned about Rubio leaving with Love come 2015...sigh...for now let's not think about that (or eating Vaseline) and take a look, with help from Basketball-Reference, at how Rubio's impressive rookie start compares with an ex-TPup's impressive start to his rookie year back in 1996, Stephon Marbury.
TO THE SSSSSSSSSTATS!
Ricky Rubio through 21 games:
Current PER: 17.4
Another week and more dropping shooting percentages for Ricky. The question that has to be asked by fans and by coaches...and I suppose by Ricky himself is, was the hot start just a hot start shooting and this is the norm or was the hot start the norm and are the rookie legs weary from this condensed schedule making for this shooting slump?
Stephon Marbury rookie year through 21 games:
Say what you will about Stephon Marbury, the guy could fill up a stat sheet. Obviously a more skilled scorer than Ricky, Stephon gets the better of Rubio in most of those stat lines through 21 games. Turnovers are another stat line in which Stephon gets the upper hand and is another line that I think needs to be watched as Rubio continues his rookie season. PER is in favor of Ricky but isn't a great comparison since Marbury's PER listed is for the whole season. Rubio should hope to finish his rookie year at or above Marbury's PER though and his did drop .2 from last week.
Again though in the comparison, Ricky comes out looking very good. The thing that looks better than all of these stats since last week is the Wolves 3-1 record, with their only loss coming against the Lakers in a game they easily could have won. As the Wolves health improves and more of their roster gets back into the flow, it will be interesting to see how the influx of talent affects Rubio's stat line. Will Barea and Beasley take some of the scoring away, but then in turn will his assists go up even further?
Next week look for another comparison on Tuesday, only this time instead of looking in the past at another point guard to compare to Ricky, we will look at another current rookie Kyrie Irving and may have a bit of a back and forth with Coop Deville of Cleveland on whose rookie reigns supreme (yes, I took "reigns supreme" from Iron Chef).
Past Rubio Comparisons:
Past Rubio Comparisons: