A few hours before the 2021 NBA Draft was under way, general manager Koby Altman and the Cleveland Cavaliers had already begun making moves before they even made their selection of Evan Mobley. Cleveland and the Minnesota Timberwolves agreed to a trade that would send Cavs forward, Taurean Prince, a 2022 second-round pick via the Washington Wizards, and cash considerations to the Wolves in exchange for veteran point guard, Ricky Rubio.
Cleveland drafting Evan Mobley should have come as a shock to virtually nobody, unless you were one of the few that believed Jalen Suggs should have been taken there, or hoped the Cavs would trade back in this year’s draft from there. After taking Mobley and signing Jarrett Allen to a five-year contract, Cleveland has laid the foundation for their frontcourt of the future moving forward.
That being said, there are still some crucial needs Altman and the front office needs to address. One of those needs was a backup point guard. Fortunately, this Minnesota trade has solved that need.
As Cleveland gears up for another year with their exciting young core, Darius Garland is poised to take on the role of the starting point guard once again. As an emerging leader on this Cleveland team, Garland needs to take that next step this upcoming season. Having Rubio in The Land will surely elevate Garland’s game in several ways.
Taking that into consideration, we will examine three distinct ways that Rubio’s role on the Cavs can improve Garland’s play.
Starting off, let’s discuss Rubio’s defensive prowess.