Ricky Rubio has made a pretty significant amount of improvement in his shooting, averaging better than 40% from the field each of the past three seasons after never doing that previously. But even an improved Rubio is still not a very good shooter.
His unreliable shot was the primary reason Tom Thibodeau traded him after the 2016-17 season to the Jazz (for the first-round pick that became Josh Okogie).
With that as a preamble, let's turn our attention to Game 5 Wednesday, with the Jazz going in trailing 3-1 against Houston.
With Utah down by one point late, Rubio was wide open in the left corner. He took the pass, loaded up the perfect look, and ... missed everything. Airball.
The Jazz never scored again, losing 100-93 and getting eliminated. It was possible in that exact moment to feel very badly for Rubio and also to deeply understand the trade at the same time.
Read Michael Rand's blog at startribune.com/randball. firstname.lastname@example.org