By: Mark Scarlett
The Minnesota Timberwolves selected Ricky Rubio with the fifth pick in the 2009 draft. He was a star in Europe that made his professional debut at the age of 14. As impressive as that is, I would say that’s where he peaked.
I’m going to start this article off on a positive note before I shit on everything that makes the man known as Ricky Rubio. I understand the appeal of a 6’4” point guard that makes spectacular passes. And to his credit, Ricky has been a great passer and decision maker in the NBA. He doesn’t turn the ball over at a crazy rate. In fact, he is currently 4th in assist-to-turnover ratio behind only Chris Paul, Tony Parker, and my beloved Ish Smith (TJ McConnell just behind Rubio, but he’s 1st in the NBA in biggest balls during crunch time). So, there is the good I see in Rubio’s game. He’s very smart with the ball in his hands.
Of course, there is a reason that Ricky is one of my least favorite players in the NBA. And that’s because he can’t shoot. He’s been playing basketball at the professional level for 12 years now and he cannot shoot. From anywhere. And it’s not like he takes bad shots. He knows he can’t shoot, so he doesn’t shoot bad shots.
One would assume that his shooting percentage would be pretty good if he doesn’t take bad shots, right?
Wrong. So wrong. Ricky is enjoying the first season in which he has shot higher than 40% on 2-point shots alone. What the fuck are you doing Rick?!?! It feels like he just closes his eyes, heaves the ball at the rim, and prays for something cool to happen. Evan Turner is shooting a higher percentage on attempted alley oops than Ricky is on layups and floaters.
Despite his abysmal shooting inside the arc, his 3-point percentage isn’t as God awful as you might think. Don’t get me wrong, it’s bad. He’s a career 31% from 3. Maybe I’m a little harsh on him, but I was assuming a guy that can’t convert above 40% of his 2-point shots would be anywhere from the 20-25% range. So I will give Ricky some credit for his 31%. However, I need to dump on Ricky a little because 3 of his 6 seasons in the NBA, he has been below 30%, which is mind-blowing for a guy that never shoots bad shots. Sometimes, he even turns down open shots because he knows how pathetic his 3 ball is. Brandon Jennings was gifting him an open 3 and poor Rick didn’t even think about it.
We live in a world where in the NBA, it’s a problem if you don’t have at least 4 shooters on the court. It’s especially troublesome if your point guard can’t shoot. And boy can Ricky not shoot.
My biggest problem with Ricky isn’t just that he can’t shoot. I don’t other non-shooters hate Emmanuel Mudiay or Kris Dunn (quite the opposite actually), who both struggle beyond the arc. This is because I believe that everyone takes some time to evolve.
I’ve given Ricky his time. He’s 26 years old and in his 6th NBA season. We know what Ricky is at this point.
Ricky is like a good ol’ fashioned OTPHJ (over the pants handjob for those of you that don’t use OTPHJ as often as I do). You see the potential. You think, “Hey maybe this is going somewhere. This could be really good. Great even.” But instead, you end up getting your dick felt through a pair of jeans, then part ways with the scorpion-woman that has teased you with an OTPHJ. Only strange men enjoy an OTPHJ that stops at an OTPHJ. Just like only silly NBA fans like Ricky Rubio. An OTPHJ is not meant to have a starting role in your night out. It’s down towards the end of the bench. You’ll take it, but by no means do you prefer it to almost anything else.
That’s where Ricky belongs. Down towards the end of the bench. Maybe a little spark for your team if he comes in and makes a nice play. But he isn’t a starter. And his stint as a starter in this league needs to come to an end, and I am more than happy to be the man that starts the movement to put Ricky’s ass, and horrible shooting, on the bench.