Exclusive 1-on-1: Ricky Rubio

Exclusive 1-on-1: Ricky Rubio

Jonah Ballow
Wolves Editor/Writer

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Jonah Ballow: Welcome to Timberwolves.com, Jonah Ballow here and we have an exclusive one-on-one interview with Ricky Rubio. While it's hard to remember that 2009, two years ago, you were the No. 5 overall pick for the Minnesota Timberwolves and now, 2011, just days before the 2011 draft you have finally arrived in Minneapolis. First of all, welcome to the city, and I just want to get your thoughts on your emotions after winning the title and then deciding to come here to Minneapolis.

Ricky Rubio: Yeah it's exciting. I just finished the Spanish League, we won it. We were so happy and now I take the adventure to play here with the Minnesota Timberwolves and to play in the NBA. I'm living a dream.

Jonah Ballow: You have said that many times that this is a dream to play here in the NBA and why do you think that it was important for you to wait two years and kind of put off that dream to mature overseas in Spain?

Ricky Rubio: Yeah, maybe to be more ready, to be ready because I felt ready in 2009 but two years after I won everything in Europe and I think I'm more ready right now.

Jonah Ballow: What has happened in those two years with you, not only on the court but off the court?

Ricky Rubio: A lot of things, a lot of things that you can never think about. In two years what's going to happen. There are a lot of things that happened. I enjoyed a lot of my Barcelona time with the Barca team, I made a lot of friends, it was valuable. Now I'm ready to come.

Jonah Ballow: What about your basketball game? Do you think it's evolved in those two years? You think you've been able to mature from a standpoint of getting older, stronger, and faster?

Ricky Rubio: Yeah I grew up as a player, as a physically and mentally because two years is a lot for a young guy or young player to grow and to be ready to play here.

Jonah Ballow: Alright let's talk about your off-the-court stuff a little bit. What's it like to be a 14-year-old prodigy playing professional basketball? Most kids here it's a big deal if they come out after one year of college but you've been playing since you were 14, what's that been like for you?

Ricky Rubio: Yeah it's hard, it's hard because you are 14 years old. Your friends going out or just going to the cinema and you have to travel with the team. Sometimes you don't want to do it but it was a dream for me to play on ACB and sometimes when my friends were making jokes or playing, I would have to study because I couldn't do it on the weekend because I would travel. It's hard but I think that everybody wants to be in the same position.

Jonah Ballow: Who played a large part in your development on the court? We have seen some videos about you working out with some of the NBA guys as far as the fellow Spaniards but what about some of the guys and coaches that have really helped you become the player you are today?

Ricky Rubio: Yeah I think I got lucky with the coach I got because they helped me a lot. A