Shooting coach Mike Penberthy didn't return to the Timberwolves this season on a full-time basis, but he will continue to work with pupil Ricky Rubio and maybe others, including Zach LaVine, both during visits to Minneapolis and when the Wolves play closer to Penberthy's Los Angeles-area home.
Penberthy served as the Wolves' shooting-coach specialist last season but reached a mutual agreement with the team that he would not return, partly because he didn't want to be apart from his family for the entire season.
"It depends on the games, how many minutes I play, how tired I am," Rubio said. "But I'm probably going to work out with him as much as I can. It's a good relationship I built last year with him and I want to keep building. It's something that is good for me."
Penberthy often said last season that Rubio's shooting would get worse before it got better as the two deconstructed his shot and corrected flaws before they put it back together with the correct form and rhythm.
He shot a career-low 25.5 percent on three-pointers last season when he played just 22 games because of a severely sprained ankle. His career-best season on three-pointers was his lockout- and injury-shortened season when he shot 34 percent.
Rubio continues to work on his improved midrange game, shooting as he comes off screens. It's a shot that is so crucial in an NBA game built around the pick-and-roll game, one that Rubio calls "the key of the game right now."
But he also acknowledges he needs to improve that three-point shot, and has. He said he made 89 of 100 shooting in the gym Sunday night.
"That's my record," he said. "Pretty good, but let's see in the game."
Adelman visits camp
The Wolves had a special visitor at Thursday's practice, another three-plus-hour workout: former coach Rick Adelman, who's in town visiting his son David (a Wolves assistant coach) and his new grandbaby.
"Anytime a coach like Rick is in town, we want him at practice," Wolves coach Sam Mitchell said about a man who won 1,042 career NBA games. "I want to pick his brain, see what he thinks, what he thinks we can improve. He won a lot of basketball games running that motion offense, so anytime a coach like him is in town, I'm always going to invite him to pick his brain.
"He could be doing a lot of things and I appreciate that he comes over here and spends three hours with us."
A good first impression
Rubio is just the team's starting point guard, not one of its scouts or decision-making executives. But he could still see the potential of Kentucky center Karl Anthony-Towns when Rubio watched him and other draft prospects work out at the Wolves' new training facility in June.
"When I watched the young guys, the draft guys, working out, I only needed two minutes to see he was the guy," Rubio said. "He has a lot of talent. He can shoot the ball. The main thing that impressed me is he really wants to be here. He has a lot of talent. Playing with him now, he's a guy who reaches stretches the floor. He's a big guy, an athletic guy who can run the floor and hit the open shot."
• Wolves single-game tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Tuesday at timberwolves.com/wolvestix or by calling 612-673-1234. The Wolves are introducing a new digital ticket system this season. The home opener is Nov. 2 against Portland.
•Veteran Tayshaun Prince was asked how he felt after camp's opening days. "Terrible. The older you get, the harder training camp gets. Everybody's sore, so it's just not me."
•LaVine impressed at Thursday's practice-ending scrimmage, particularly with his shooting. "He probably went for like 40 just now," teammate Andrew Wiggins said.