By Jerry Zgoda
To address the little birdie and Charley Walters’ “report” that Ricky Rubio was in town — or due in town — yesterday to meet with David Kahn…
Honestly, I don’t know.
I’ve worked to confirm it, which unfortunately as a beat writer is a necessity, but haven’t been able to.
David Kahn promised “transparency” when he took the job but eventually said “Sorry, we have no comment” when I texted him numerous times to ask if has, or will soon meet, with Rubio and his father.
That he says no comment rather than deny it leads me to believe there’s something there, which isn’t surprising that the two sides would begin some kind of conversation face to face soon.
Rubio’s agent, Dan Fegan, has not returned repeated phone messages, except, I suspect, to hang up on me when he called from a posh New York City hotel this morning not knowing exactly whose call he was returning from his cell phone.
Well-placed people inside the Wolves say they don’t know whether Rubio slipped into town or whether Kahn will try to meet with him and/or Fegan when Kahn hits the road this week to begin his coaching search.
The New York Post reported Rubio, perhaps as early as Monday, is expected to receive offers to play for teams in Turkey and Madrid next season.
If he does sign elsewhere for big money, the Wolves still hold his rights. And unless he breaks his neck or struggles, he’ll just continue to gain value as the Wolves sit and wait.
Either team could pay considerably more to his buyout than the $500,000 that NBA rules allow the Wolves to pay.
So until it becomes clearer and the two sides become forthright, here’s some notes and thoughts on other subjects regarding the RRM (Ricky Rubio Matter) and word that’s coming in from sources around the league now that the draft is behind us:
* I can’t see Rubio and Jonny Flynn playing together because I don’t think Fegan will ever allow it.
He’s aiming for that big second contract to compensate for the buyout millions Rubio is going to have to pay his Spanish team and he won’t allow the chance that Flynn outplays his client and diminishes his value when that second contract comes around.
* Kahn fielded offers to Al Jefferson on draft day — including one from New Jersey that offered Devin Harris, Yi Jianlian and the No. 11 in some sort of package — but don’t think they were considered all the seriously.
*Kevin Love’s name didn’t come up much, if at all, in trade talks other Memphis trying to get him and the No. 5 or 6 for the No. 2.
* The Wolves did turn down that Knicks’ offer of No. 8 and Wilson Chandler for the No. 5, which Donnie Walsh would have used to take Rubio and not Stephen Curry.
*The Wolves took Henk Norel from the Netherlands with a second-round pick as much for the fact that he’s Rubio’s teammate at DKV Joventut and is a friendly face as they did for his potential.
*Kahn is expected to hit the road next week to start his coaching interview search rather than stay in Minneapolis and let coaches come to him.
It’ll be interesting to see how many coaches are scratching their heads over the Wolves’ draft and wondering if they want any part of this thing.
But it only takes one who doesn’t, and it sure looks like that guy will be Mark Jackson, with Bill Laimbeer — who I hear Kahn spoke with he was saying he didn’t have a coaching list and wasn’t going to have one until after the draft — likely as an assistant.