Timberwolves trading point guard Ricky Rubio to Cavaliers

Chris Hine, Star Tribune on

Published in Basketball

MINNEAPOLIS — Ricky Rubio's second stint with the Timberwolves has come to an end.

The Wolves are trading Rubio to Cleveland in exchange for forward Taurean Prince, a 2022 second-round pick and cash, a source confirmed.

Rubio got off to a slow start last season and said it was difficult to get up to speed early in the season before playing better in the second half. He averaged 8.6 points, a career low, and 6.4 assists. He's currently playing for Spain in the Olympics.

"Before the pandemic hit, I think I was playing my best basketball," Rubio said at the end of the season. "I was coming off of a great summer with the national team in the World Cup, and then a great year in Phoenix. I was finishing the season really strong and then the pandemic hits and kind of throws me off my game. And I got to get back to that."

His biggest impact last season likely came in his mentorship of rookie Anthony Edwards, who frequently lauded Rubio's leadership and friendship. When asked one of his favorite parts of playing his rookie year recently, Edwards said getting to play alongside Rubio was a highlight.


Rubio played six years with the Wolves from 2011-17 before the Wolves traded him to Utah, only for President Gersson Rosas to get him back on draft night last season. Now, in another draft day trade, Rubio is headed out of town again.

Rosas made the move in part because he has pledged to bolster the power forward position, and Prince helps with that.

Prince has played five seasons between Atlanta, Brooklyn and Cleveland. He averaged 9.5 points per game between the Nets and Cavaliers last season. The move also frees up cap space for the Wolves ahead of free agency. Prince is set to make about $4.8 million less than Rubio this season.

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