Step by step, Wolves' Rubio resumes his basketball career

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 28, 2012 - 9:18 AM

The rehabbing guard is running and hopes to play by December.

Back running on his surgically repaired knee for the third week now, injured Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio stopped long enough Thursday at Target Center to show off three scars that stripe his left leg and said he could play his next NBA game by December, nine months after he tore two ligaments there.

"I don't know, they say December, but it could be January," he said. "I don't want to say a time because I don't want to rush it. I want to be ready when I am ready."

Rubio returned to Vail, Colo., three weeks ago for another checkup with his surgeon and was given approval to begin running again in three- minute segments alternated with walking.

He plans one more trip there to see knee specialist Dr. Richard Steadman.

"But it's just to shake the hand with the doctor when I'm ready, when I'm ready to roll," he said.

Rubio was able to shoot free throws all summer while he was rehabilitating that left knee in Minnesota and back home in Spain. He said Steadman told him he can begin jumping by November, but Rubio is hopeful it's before then and insists he's not putting any timetable on the steps to his return.

"There's not a time because it depends on how the knee goes," he said. "Now I start running and I feel good. In three, four weeks, I'm gonna start agility and if my knee swells a little bit, I have to stop. If not, I'm going to keep pushing it. I'm trying to do as much as I can do. They have to stop me sometimes because I want to do more. Sometimes it's just bad for my knee to do more things."

He will accompany his teammates to training camp that starts Tuesday in Mankato. In August, Wolves President of Basketball Operations David Kahn said he wants Rubio with the team every step of the way, even if all Rubio said he will be able to do next week is observe.

"I can only run, I can't move lateral," Rubio said. "I can only watch and be an assistant coach."

Rubio hasn't run and jumped and passed a basketball behind his back since he planted that left leg in a March 9 game against the Los Angeles Lakers and ended up in a heap, clutching his knee in pain.

"It has been a long time without running and dunking," he said. "Well, I never dunk, but just like try it. It's so hard to watch basketball knowing you can't play."

Rubio has spent the past six months resting and strengthening his knee, catching up on his reading, spending time with family and friends and playing a video game.

"I'm not a big fan of PlayStation, but at least I can play basketball there," he said. "I was just trying to do fun things without playing basketball. It's hard for me."

Without him, the Wolves lost 20 of their final 25 games. Without him, Spain reached the London Olympics gold medal game and lost 107-100 to the U.S. team that included fellow Timberwolf Kevin Love.

Might he own a gold medal now if not for that injured knee?

"I wish, but because I wasn't there, I don't want to tell you," said Rubio, who started at age 17 when Spain lost to the U.S. team in the 2008 Olympics gold medal game. "I have my silver medal [from Beijing] already. I want my gold medal in 2016."

He also wants to play again, as soon as possible. But not at any price.

"A lot of them," he said when asked what he has missed about basketball. "Missing the Olympics, watching them [Spain] win some games, watching the last part of last season. Watching my teammates play and I can't, it's hard. It's hard physically, but it's hard in the mind, too, because you're just like, 'I want to do it.'

"But you can't in that moment. You just have to wait. You feel how lucky you are when you play, so I'll be blessed when I play."

  • related content

  • Read the replay: Timberwolves chat with Jerry Zgoda

    Thursday September 27, 2012

    See what Timberwolves writer Jerry Zgoda talked about with fans during his Thursday afternoon Live Chat.

  • (center) Wolves Ricky Rubio was surrounded by the media during a pres...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Philadelphia 12/20/14 3:30 PM
Washington
San Diego 12/20/14 7:25 PM
San Francisco
Minnesota 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Baltimore 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Detroit 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
Cleveland 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Atlanta 12/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Green Bay 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Kansas City 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 12/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 12/21/14 3:05 PM
St. Louis
Buffalo 12/21/14 3:25 PM
Oakland
Indianapolis 12/21/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Seattle 12/21/14 7:30 PM
Arizona
Denver 12/22/14 7:30 PM
Cincinnati
Utah 101 FINAL
Orlando 94
Charlotte 109 FINAL
Philadelphia 91
Brooklyn 91 FINAL
Cleveland 95
Washington 105 FINAL
Miami 103
Minnesota 98 FINAL
Boston 114
Toronto 110 FINAL
Detroit 100
Chicago 103 FINAL
Memphis 97
Portland 129 FINAL
San Antonio 119
LA Clippers 106 FINAL
Denver 109
Oklahoma City 64 3rd Qtr 6:08
LA Lakers 61
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(SO)
New Jersey 3
Anaheim 2 FINAL
Ottawa 6
NY Islanders 2 FINAL
Detroit 1
Boston 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 2
Dallas 2 FINAL
Calgary 1
Wilberforce 71 FINAL
Youngstown St 92
Jackson State 49 FINAL
Tulane 56
Siena 66 FINAL
Radford 76
Stillman 49 FINAL
Alabama 69
Case Western Reserve 65 FINAL
Bucknell 88
Niagara 62 FINAL
Buffalo 88
SD Christian 46 FINAL
UC Santa Barbara 69
Concordia (MI) 60 FINAL
Central Mich 97
Northern Ill 55 FINAL
Dartmouth 58
North Florida 83 FINAL
Florida A&M 65
Hiwassee 71 FINAL
Gardner-Webb 91
Tennessee St 54 FINAL
Hampton 66
NC A&T 57 FINAL
Kent State 71
Central Penn College 65 FINAL
Liberty 94
Eastern Ky 72 FINAL
Miami-Florida 44
Northern Ky 83 FINAL
Morehead State 60
Northern Ariz 62 FINAL
Norfolk State 81
MD-Eastern Shore 43 FINAL
Old Dominion 60
St Marys-CA 47 FINAL
St Johns 53
Clemson 45 FINAL
South Carolina 68
Tenn Tech 58 FINAL
Tennessee 61
Washington-MD 46 FINAL
William & Mary 86
Bethune-Cookman 46 FINAL
Mercer 67
Furman 78 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 83
South Dakota St 53 FINAL
CS-Bakersfield 49
Milligan 53 FINAL
Lamar 80
LSU-Alexandria 71 FINAL
ULM 76
Southern Utah 57 FINAL
Loyola-Chicago 73
Chattanooga 58 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 68
Seattle 57 FINAL
Minnesota 92
Lipscomb 55 FINAL
Princeton 77
Winthrop 71 FINAL
SE Louisiana 81
Dickinson State 48 FINAL
North Dakota 78
New Orleans 56 FINAL
Southern Ill 52
TX-Pan American 60 FINAL
Creighton 75
Colorado State 85 FINAL
Denver 84
Alabama A&M 49 FINAL
Marquette 83
Ark-Pine Bluff 51 FINAL
Texas Tech 72
Eastern Wash 67 2nd Half 0:25
California 78
Idaho State 56 FINAL
Utah State 69
Arizona 28 2nd Half
Texas-El Paso 25
Hawaii 10:59 PM
Chaminade
Nevada 12/20/14 10:00 AM
Louisiana
Utah State 12/20/14 1:20 PM
Texas-El Paso
(23) Utah 12/20/14 2:30 PM
Colorado State
Western Mich 12/20/14 4:45 PM
Air Force
South Alabama 12/20/14 8:15 PM
Bowling Green
BYU 12/22/14 1:00 PM
Memphis
Marshall 12/23/14 5:00 PM
Northern Ill
Navy 12/23/14 8:30 PM
San Diego St
Central Mich 12/24/14 11:00 AM
Western Ky
Fresno State 12/24/14 7:00 PM
Rice
Illinois 12/26/14 12:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Rutgers 12/26/14 3:30 PM
North Carolina
NC State 12/26/14 7:00 PM
UCF
Ohio Valley 33 FINAL
Youngstown St 84
East Tenn St 48 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 61
Cal-Irvine 44 FINAL
Purdue 69
Campbell 63 FINAL
Stetson 76
Jacksonville St 70 FINAL
Charleston Southern 43
Louisiana 64 FINAL
Alcorn State 57
Denver 63 FINAL
Wright State 72
Blue Mountain 30 FINAL
Central Arkansas 71
Texas State 51 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 40
Albany 62 FINAL
Pepperdine 36
TX-San Antonio 53 FINAL
Houston 56
Yale 66 FINAL
Bucknell 73
Northern Colorado 56 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 69
Belmont 86 FINAL
Mercer 83
Massachusetts 66 FINAL
Georgia State 71
George Mason 69 FINAL
Winthrop 57
Portland State 33 FINAL
Princeton 104
UCLA 71 FINAL
Samford 52
Mobile 30 FINAL
Alabama State 66
Nicholls 49 FINAL
Texas Tech 76
Toledo 65 FINAL
Nevada 56
UMass Lowell 48 FINAL
(13) Duke 95
St Marys-CA 49 FINAL
Virginia 62
McNeese State 55 FINAL
Rice 57
McMurry 49 FINAL
Houston Baptist 69
NJIT 62 FINAL
Seton Hall 74
(6) North Carolina 65 FINAL
Maine 36
Lafayette 58 FINAL
Stony Brook 60
Siena 62 FINAL
Binghamton 53
Longwood 56 FINAL
Clemson 72
Savannah State 51 FINAL
Florida State 97
(19) Syracuse 72 FINAL
(9) Baylor 74
Buffalo 68 FINAL
Manhattan 58
Canisius 43 FINAL
Michigan 79
Davidson 66 FINAL
NC State 82
Northern Ky 63 FINAL
Delaware 58
Saint Louis 81 FINAL
Austin Peay 86
(25) DePaul 64 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 98
Ohio U 74 FINAL
La Salle 63
Florida Atlantic 60 FINAL
Long Beach St 85
Miami-Florida 65 FINAL
Tulane 70
Miss Valley St 39 FINAL
Memphis 62
Ark-Pine Bluff 56 FINAL
UAB 65
Bowling Green 58 FINAL
Illinois State 54
Arkansas State 78 FINAL
Missouri State 62
ULM 42 FINAL
Wichita State 57
(16) Oregon State 71 FINAL
Southern Ill 55
Pacific 67 FINAL
New Mexico St 62
No Dakota State 79 FINAL
Cal State Fullerton 86
Utah State 92 FINAL
Sacramento St 102
Bethesda (CA) 61 FINAL
Fresno State 83
Utah Valley U 44 FINAL
Montana 68
LSU 55 2nd Half 7:52
UC Santa Barbara 35
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite pro sports coach in the Twin Cities?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close