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Trey Burke vs. Ricky Rubio and Shabazz Muhammad: Trey has skills


Second time is a charm for our promise of not updating the Wolves 2013 NBA Draft look-back until the All-Star break.

We know, we told you at the end of January we wouldn't bring you any more updates until now, but then former Wolf Trey Burke won the rookie of the month for February, so we had to give you one more blurb before this one.

Well, now we can keep all the promises we make to you loyal Wolves fans, starting now. Thanks for the second chance, we love you.

Burke participated in the Rising Stars Challenge Friday, the kickoff of All-Star weekend, and the back-to-back NBA honoree wasn't quite himself. But Saturday, he got his groove back.

TREY BURKE: In a no-defense, mish-mash of absurdity featuring the game's top rookies against the top sophomores, Burke missed all seven of his three-pointers in the Rising Stars game, and was one of just three rookies to not reach double-figures in scoring.

For a brief moment, the game turned into Dion Waiters of the Cavaliers against Tim Hardaway Jr. of the Knicks in a one-on-one showdown. The two went back-and-forth firing threes from 30 feet, and they both finished with 30-plus points. Andre Drummond grabbed MVP honors, putting up 30 points and an outrageous 25 rebounds, and "Team Hill" (Grant Hill coached the sophomores) defeated "Team Webber" (Chris Webber coached the rookies) 142-136, as if anyone cared.

As for Burke, the bright side is that he dished out six assists after coming off the bench to replace Michael Carter-Williams, likely the only rookie ahead of him for rookie of the year honors.

The other good news? The next night Burke got the better of Carter-Williams, as he and Damian Lillard, representing the Western Conference in the Skills Challenge, beat MCW and Victor Oladipo by one-tenth of a second.

The challenge combines passing, dribbling, and around-the-bucket skill in a timed obstacle course, and Burke's success made sure he wouldn't come away from the weekend empty-handed.

SHABAZZ MUHAMMAD: Don't look now, but Shabazz has played in four of the Wolves seven February games, including 17 impressive minutes against Portland when Kevin Love and Kevin Martin missed the game because of injuries.

The UCLA alum is shooting 9-of-17 from the field this month, and while he isn't completely in the swingman rotation, should the Wolves continue to trend downward, he'll likely see more time come the latter stages of the season if Minnesota falls out of contention.

RICKY RUBIO: Rubio is playing a season-high 33 minutes per game in February, and having his best month of the year, getting to double-figures in scoring four times in Minnesota's seven games after taking all of January to reach that number last month.

Rubio scored a career-high 25 points in the loss to Portland (below), but expressed after the game that when he gets more shots he feels more comfortable.

It would benefit Rubio greatly to build on this momentum offensively the rest of the season, something that could surely put to bed stories like ours, and finish up draft-bust talk.


Trey wasn't great in the showcase, but who cares. Shabazz wasn't in the showcase, but is showing some good things. Ricky looks to build on some early-month momentum.

More after we enjoy more outrageous All-Star weekend basketball.

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