An NFL Fan’s Guide to the 2015-16 Timberwolves

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Oct 29, 2014; Memphis, TN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio (9) drives to the basket during the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

Ricky Rubio = Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford

I know that this will frustrate some Wolves fans. I don’t particularly like Stafford’s game and was close to using Aaron Rodgers as Ricky’s comparison instead, but I think this fits much better. Rodgers has a way of making spectacular passes into impossibly-tight spaces, but he’s so good at everything. It’s that last point that drove Ricky’s comparison away from Rodgers and into Stafford.

Stafford alternates between thrilling his fan base and frustrating them with his play. Ricky has a similar effect on his fans. He’ll dazzle with passing, then won’t take a wide open shot or drive down an open lane. He’ll make a great play on defense, get out on the break, and then will pass up a slightly contested lay-up for himself to set another player up for a lower percentage shot.

Even though both can be frustrating, they can make some amazing passes. Ricky and Stafford will drop their arm on passes to get the right angle to squeeze the ball through defenders. Ricky will put some crazy spin on his passes to get them around defenders, while Stafford will make some crazy passes off his back foot or on the run.

Another similarity is that they both have supremely athletic teammates to throw the ball to. Stafford has Calvin Johnson, who is one of the top athletic freaks in the NFL. Ricky has Zach LaVine, Andrew Wiggins, and Karl-Anthony Towns, all of whom are super athletic and can finish anything around the basket.

Ricky will hopefully keep improving his jump shot this season and be a little less frustrating for Wolves fans this year. If Ricky can improve his scoring ability, he may be able to soon be compared to Rodgers.

Next: Youthful Exuberance is Only Part of the Battle