Ricky Rubio needed all of 30 seconds to show the Washington Wizards he was feeling good Monday night.
As the shot clock ticked down, Rubio dribbled on the right wing, then bolted up and hit a long jumper. 2-0, Timberwolves.
About 20 seconds later, the Wolves' second bucket gave the Wizards a taste of what else they'd be seeing all game. Rubio stole a pass by John Wall, dribbled ahead, then let Minnesota catch up with him.
Rubio slipped the ball to the onrushing Karl-Anthony Towns, who kept right on running, absorbing contact and making a difficult shot. 4-0, Timberwolves.
And on and on they went like that, the whole night, Rubio looking for (and making) his shot more than usual, Towns converting Rubio's easy deliveries into difficult buckets.
Ricky finished with one of the best nights of his career: 22 points (8-of-15 shooting, 2-of-5 from three), a franchise-record 19 assists, and a plus-minus rating of +20. (Wall, Rubio's All-Star counterpart, posted a -23 plus-minus.)
Rubio couldn't have done it without Towns, who scored on 10 of the Spaniard's assists, and finished with 39 points (17-of-26 shooting) and 13 rebounds.
Fittingly, Rubio and Towns teamed up to seal the deal late in a close game. With about four minutes to go, the Wizards were just five points back, 102-97, when Rubio found Towns for a 3-pointer. A couple minutes later, another Rubio-to-Towns triple put the Wolves up 12, and the game out of reach; Minnesota ultimately won 119-104.
The Timberwolves are 7-3 in their last 10, and now sit 3.5 games outside the last Western Conference playoff spot.
Watch highlights from Rubio's career game below ... and get the added bonus of seeing lots of Towns' monster game, too.
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