Not surprisingly, Ricky Rubio will not play today against Memphis because of a left hamstring strain. I say not surprisingly because Rubio, who didn’t play after being listed as probable the last two games, was questionable going into this one.
Once again, Zach LaVine will start in Rubio’s place.
Wolves coach Sam Mitchell wouldn’t get into much detail about Rubio’s situation. He wouldn’t say whether Rubio, after missing three straight games, would need to get in a practice before returning to the lineup.
“It depends on how he feels,” Mitchell said. “I spend my time worrying about the guys who are going to play. It does me no good to worry about the guys that can’t play. You want me to spend all my time worrying about something I can’t control, about someone who’s not going to play tonight? I don’t think I’d be doing my job.’’
Here are some other items before today’s matinee tipoff:
--Most have already narrowed the NBA’s rookie of the year race to Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns and Philadelphia’s Jahlil Okafor.
There is a reason for this. Okafor is first among rookies in scoring (19.0) and Towns is second (15.7). Towns is first among rookies in rebounds (10.3) and blocks (2.33).
But don’t forget about Nemanja Bjelica. He’s actually playing slightly more than Towns and is tops among rookies in three-point shooting (44.1) and sixth in scoring (8.9).
--Kevin Garnett needs 18 minutes to become the fifth player in league history to play 50,000 minutes. The four who have: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Jason Kidd, Elvin Hayes.
--Garnett also needs five assists to tie Dave Bing for 46th place on the league’s all-time list, and 35 points to reach 26,000.
--Minnesota has shot 49 percent or better in two straight games and three of the last four.