Rubio Visits Sacramento, Harden In OKC
In his first team visit since arriving in the U.S. yesterday afternoon, Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio met with the Sacramento Kings late last night and is continuing his visit today. The Kings, who own the fourth overall pick in next Thursday’s draft, have an obvious need for a point guard and might now be in position to see Rubio fall to them.
Whether Sacramento is sold on the 18-year-old phenom’s abilities is something that probably is being decided during his visit. What’s become clear, however, is Rubio and representatives are eager to land in Sacramento. The Sacramento Bee was granted an exclusive sit-down interview with Rubio at a downtown hotel late Tuesday night, allowing Rubio the opportunity to be seen and heard talking about the Kings’ roster and how he would fit. The Sacramento Bee also reported that Rubio doesn’t have any other visits scheduled on his trip. This despite earlier reports that he had planned on visiting Oklahoma City and the Los Angeles Clippers while in the country.
Rubio also talked to Kings.com, and in both the Bee interview and the official team site’s, Rubio comes off as mild-mannered, humble, respectful, gracious and polite. It’s a refreshing sight to see after earlier reports claimed Rubio would rather not play in Oklahoma City or Memphis.
The question is now whether Memphis will pass on Rubio at No. 2 (assuming the Grizzlies keep the pick) and whether the Thunder would be willing to do the same at No. 3 (assuming OKC keeps the pick). With the Thunder selecting Russell Westbrook fourth overall in 2008 and Memphis drafting Mike Conley fourth overall in 2007, neither team has a pressing need for a point guard. Rubio’s pricey buyout situation with his Spanish club team, which is estimated at more than $6 million, could cause pause for both the Thunder and the Grizzlies as well since it remains to be seen if he will be allowed to come to the NBA this year. Rubio told the Bee he’s confident the matter will be resolved.
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