Coming home: Rubio returns to Wolves in draft-day deal with Thunder

Ricky Rubio is coming home.

The Minnesota Timberwolves traded the No. 17 overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft to Oklahoma City in exchange for Rubio as well as the 25th and 28th picks, according to a person with knowledge of the negotiations.

The person confirmed the deal to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the trade had not yet been announced. Deals involving players can’t be finalized until free agency officially begins on Sunday for salary cap purposes.

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Rubio, who was selected by Minnesota with the fifth pick in the 2009 draft, played six seasons with the Timberwolves from 2011-17. He appeared in 353 contests and averaged 10.3 points, 8.5 assists, 4.2 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game.

Following the 2016-17 campaign, the Timberwolves dealt Rubio to Utah for a 2018 first-round pick. Rubio played two seasons for Utah, making the playoffs both years, before being traded to Phoenix. The 30-year-old logged 13.0 points and 8.8 assists per game for the Suns in 2019-20 before being dealt again this past week to Oklahoma City in Phoenix’s trade for guard Chris Paul.

Rubio is under contract for the next two seasons before he’ll become an unrestricted free agent in 2022.

The Spanish point guard played two seasons alongside Timberwolves All-Star center Karl-Anthony Towns from 2015-17.

Earlier in the 2020 draft, Minnesota used the top choice to select Georgia shooting guard Anthony Edwards.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.