Suns news: Ricky Rubio reacts to winning gold medal, MVP at FIBA World Cup
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Ricky Rubio reacts to winning gold medal, MVP at FIBA World Cup

Ricky Rubio, Spain, FIBA World Cup

Ricky Rubio has been silencing his critics on the international stage since he was a teenage phenom playing for Spain at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

On Sunday, Rubio culminated a fantastic performance at the 2019 FIBA World Cup by winning the gold medal and being named the MVP of the competition after Spain defeated Argentina in the final.

Rubio said that the loss of his mother has continued to motivate him in his career:

He also reflected on the journey in Beijing as a testament to the heart of the Spanish team:

Rubio cemented his status as the MVP by pouring in 20 points against Argentina.

The success in Beijing should do quite a lot to quell the frustrations of a summer where Rubio has been criticized endlessly for the contract that he signed with the Phoenix Suns in free agency.

Executives around the league blasted the Suns for signing Rubio to a three-year, $51 million contract. In fact, an ESPN survey of 20 coaches, executives and scouts voted the signing as the worst move of the offseason:

“They paid him a lot of money, and he isn’t very good,” an Eastern Conference scout said. “Maybe it was the best they could do to finally get a point guard, but you’re designed for less than mediocrity.”

The criticisms of Rubio are somewhat strange given his production in recent years as well as his improvements on the defensive side of the ball.

Although he is hardly a lethal perimeter shooter, Rubio can control the game and provide good distribution. The Suns hope that he enters the 2019-20 season with an abundance of confidence after a strong summer on the international scene.