In2ition wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 18, 2019 7:23 am
Average STARTING PG is worlds better than average GLEAGUE PG. Rubio is a phenomenal passer, but is a pedestrian shooter at the position. The problem with Rubio in Utah wasn't that he wasn't any good, it was that he wasn't a good enough shooter to make up for having 2 other non-shooters on the floor with him. And, I'm not calling Ricky a non-shooter...just a pedestrian one. He doesn't have the gravity to make himself a major threat and pull defenders away from the non-shooters. The other problem was that Quinn and Utah's system marginalized Rubio's biggest strength in his passing, by emphasizing a team passing offense and taking the ball out of his hands in favor of Mitchell.
I think in the right system that allows his ball handling, decision making and passing to shine, while being surrounded by shooters all over the floor would bring out a different player than we've seen from Ricky. But...we'll see if that holds true or not.
This is where I'm at on Rubio. I agree with folks who say he isn't Nash and that we shouldn't expect Nash. Rubio isn't a good shooter, and Nash is one of the all-time great shooters. But I disagree with the argument that because he left Utah and Utah wanted Conley, Rubio is some kind of bum. As In2 sagely points out, the issue wasn't Rubio's talent so much as the fit. Utah really wants to run their offense as a slow half-court style dominated by Mitchell holding the ball. They also start Gobert who is not an outside shooter. Those two constraints mean that you need great shooting from the other 3 positions so Mitchell and Gobert have people to pass it out to after a drive or pick-and-roll. Rubio isn't very valuable as a spot-up shooter, so he wasn't a great fit for the offense they want to run. That's all there is to it.
Meanwhile, on a team like the Suns, I think Rubio is almost exactly what we need from our PG. Sure, it would be better if he were an above-average shooter. Absolutely. But I don't actually want a ball-dominant shoot-first PG like a Russell. That kind of PG would take shots and touches away from Booker and Ayton and could gum up our offense. We want the ball to move, and we mostly want a PG who can set up our other talented starters such as Booker, Ayton, and Oubre. And we want a PG who plays good perimeter and team defense to cover a bit for Booker on that end. And we want a PG who can run a fast break. I actually don't think D'Angelo Russell or Terry Rozier or whoever is actually a very good fit. I think Rubio actually fits our need much better. If Rubio can take smart shots and focus on what he's good at, I think it'll be a huge upgrade.
The other thing to remember is that our PGs last year were absolutely horrendous. We've almost forgotten how important the PG position is and how transformative having a good PG can be. I think Rubio will make a huge impact and just make a lot of other guys better. The improvement in, say, Ayton's game will be worth the price of admission on Rubio all by itself.