FanShot

Rubio more than just a passing fancy

"According to Hoopdata.com, his Weighted Assists average of 11.4 per game, which takes into account the added value of an assist that leads to a three-point field goal, leads the NBA. Though Rubio’s offensive flair has dominated the headlines, he’s also been a key part of the Timberwolves’ defensive improvement this season. Minnesota has jumped from 27th in the defensive efficiency rankings in 2010-11 to 14th this year thanks partly to the defensive prowess of the Spanish guard. The Timberwolves are allowing 14 fewer points with Rubio on the court than when he’s off the court, the second-best defensive rating on the team among players with at least 100 minutes played, according to basketballvalue.com. Rubio’s overall impact both on offense and defense while he’s on the court is highlighted by his team-leading plus-minus of +52. Luke Ridnour, the current starting point guard, has the second-worst plus-minus on the team (-48). Rubio has also had a huge impact on rookie Derrick Williams’ performance. Williams is averaging more than twice as many points per 36 minutes with Rubio on the court (15.9) than with Ridnour (6.8), and is making over half of his field goals when paired with Rubio, compared to just one-third with Ridnour."

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