If Rubio plays three seasons for FC Barcelona, by the summer of 2012 he no longer would be bound by the terms of the NBA rookie scale, which apply to first-round picks only for the first three years after which they are drafted.
Rubio then could exercise his buyout (which remains the same in 2012 as it is in 2011: 1 million euros), come to America at age 21 and not be bound by the rookie scale. (Yes, there is a specific rule covering these situations. We've checked the details with the highest authorities and discovered a few caveats: Rubio's contract would have to be for a minimum of three years and a maximum of five, and the money that would be made available to him could be only from a team with salary-cap space or the midlevel exception, disabled exception or biannual exception.)
So let's say the Wolves are $8 million under the cap in the summer of 2012, they still hold Rubio's rights and Rubio has blossomed into an All-Star-caliber player.
Minnesota then could offer Rubio a five-year deal starting at $8 million with 8 percent annual raises (assuming CBA rules don't change), which would total out at $46.4 million and make him an unrestricted free agent at age 26. (Moreover, if Rubio had an opt out, he could become unrestricted at 25.)
In short, if Rubio comes in 2011, the rules say he can earn a maximum of $16.3 million in his first four seasons. If he comes in 2012, he won't be boxed into that rookie-scale deal.
This makes quite a bit of sense as he gets off the Rookie salary scale. Although it's hard to predict what exactly is going to happen with the CBA. I stand by my assertion that Ricky probably never puts on a T-Wolves Uniform. I tend to think Kahn thinks similar to as evidenced by the change of the tone from draft night to yesterday. The Evidence being with Danny B. Refering to "raising his trade value' and also the switch in "Ricky being the unquestioned 1 from the moment- he walks in the doors" where as now 'Ricky comes in behind Jonny in 2 years'