A Web site report on Thursday suggested Oklahoma City might now be facing a sizeable concern regarding 18-year-old Spanish point guard sensation Ricky Rubio.
But the Thunder is in the process of scheduling workouts with all the players it is considering with the third pick in next month’s draft, including Rubio. The Thunder has not encountered any issues with Rubio or his representatives regarding playing in Oklahoma City, contrary to a report on the Web site Draftexpress.com.
The holdup in scheduling Rubio’s workout most likely stems from the fact that Rubio’s DKV Joventut team is still playing in the postseason.
The Web site, citing "people around the league,” reported Rubio’s camp might already be "sending out feelers” that he’s not interested in playing in either Memphis or Oklahoma City.
"Rubio doesn’t want to go to Memphis, and he especially does not want to pay money out of his own pocket with that huge buyout for the honor of doing so,” the Web site reported, quoting an unnamed person. "(Dan) Fegan wants him in L.A., and if he can’t have him there, he wants him in Sacramento. Definitely not Oklahoma City.”
The Grizzlies have the second overall pick. The Kings will pick fourth. But Rubio, a top three prospect, isn’t expected to fall past the third pick.
The report didn’t go on to give a reason why Fegan, Rubio’s Los-Angeles based agent, wouldn’t want his client in either city. Fegan on Thursday couldn’t be reached for comment on the report, but the Thunder’s front office has had positive communication with every agent who represents a projected top-five pick.
Aaron Goodwin, the agent who represents Kevin Durant and projected lottery pick DeMar DeRozan, said the Thunder likely should never be affected by public stances from draft-eligible players who say they don’t want to play in the city.
"A general manager and an owner are not going to succumb to an agent saying, ‘If you select my player he’s not going to come here,’” said Goodwin, co-founder of Seattle-based Goodwin Sports Management. "If a GM does, he won’t be a GM much longer.”
Fegan, however, is the same agent who represented China’s Yi Jianlian and informed the Milwaukee Bucks in 2007 to refrain from drafting him.