Rubio basically stole the “King of New York” title to whoever owns it with his epic performance on Sunday night. The Cavs guard exploded for a career-high 37 points and 10 assists to propel Cleveland to a 126-109 win.
In the process, Rubio became the first player in NBA history to have 30-plus points, 10 or more assist,s and eight or more three-pointers in a game off the bench. He did play 31 minutes, but it's mainly because the Cavs rode on his hot play.
Ricky Rubio tonight:
37 PTS (career-high)
8-9 3P (career-high)
He is the first player in NBA history with 30+ points, 10+ assists, 8+ threes in a game off the bench. pic.twitter.com/FPh7PE0Beh
— StatMuse (@statmuse) November 8, 2021
LeBron James, who was tuned in watching his former team as the Lakers got the day off, was simply in awe as he watched Ricky Rubio go off. He took to Twitter to share how amazed he was as the Spaniard torched Julius Randle and the Bockers.
Rubio going INSANE in the garden right now!!!!
— LeBron James (@KingJames) November 8, 2021
It's hard to blame James for his reaction. After all, the Cavs have largely been up and down and no one expected Rubio—playing behind Darius Garland and Collin Sexton—to have such a big game against a team looking to contend for a playoff spot in the East.
Of course, the Cavs got a ton of help from Evan Mobley (26 points, nine boards) and Jarrett Allen (18 points, 17 rebounds), but there is no doubt Rubio was the hero of the night.
Surely after watching such a performance, LeBron will even be more motivated to return to the Lakers and play as soon as possible. The superstar forward is currently out with rectus abdominal strain, and there have been talks he could be out for much longer than expected.