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Ricky Rubio is one of two significant point guards on a Minnesota Timberwolves team that is just one game above .500. He is shooting a miserable 35 percent from the floor, his Player Efficiency Rating is at 15 (which is exactly average), and he coughs up a turnover on 22 percent of the possessions he uses up -- a terrible rate, especially for a point guard.
And when he went down with a torn ACL against the Lakers on Friday night, the NBA's collective heart broke. Not only was the rookie one of the game's most engaging watches, but his willingness to take chances and help turn around a moribund Timberwolves franchise won the hearts and minds of even his most dubious and sensible critics within the first week of his first NBA season. The league will miss Rubio, badly. And the league's players immediately took to Twitter to share in the frustration and (let's face it) legitimate sadness. Starting with LeBron James:
NBA.com's Micah Hart, who was on top of this list from the beginning, also was kind enough to cull together some other tweets from other NBA stars, former teammates, and current Minnesota Timberwolves:
Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) — Praying the Ricky Rubio has a speedy recovery!
Dwyane Wade(@DwyaneWade) — Ricky Rubio's injury isn't 1 that any basketball fan wanted 2 C. He's had an amazing rookie season & has brought life back 2 a franchise.
Chris Paul (@CP3) — Prayers out to @RickyRubio9 and hoping for a speedy recovery!
DeAndre Jordan (@deandrejordan) — praying that @rickyrubio9 has a speedy and complete recovery…
Greivis Vasquez (@greivisvasquez) — Que triste la lesion de Ricky Rubio, le deseo una pronta recuperacion.
Anthony Tolliver (@ATolliver44) — Praying for @rickyrubio9 ! Extraordinary healing is coming your way! Keep your head up
Rudy Fernandez (@rudy5fernandez) — All my support to my friend and mate @rickyrubio9
Jose Calderon (@josemcalderon8) — All my support to my big friend and teammate @rickyrubio9. Hard news about his knee. He'll be back stronger
With spring in the air, March Madness less than a week away and the NBA playoffs just around the corner, it's a good time to be a basketball fan. But that doesn't mean we're not looking forward to next winter, and Rubio's return. See you then, Ricky.
(Thanks again to Micah Hart for the heads-up.)