Cavs PG Ricky Rubio to pause career, focus on mental health

Cleveland Cavaliers and Spanish National Team point guard Ricky Rubio announced Saturday that he was putting his career on hold indefinitely to focus on mental health.

"I have decided to stop my professional activity to take care of my mental health. I want to thank all the support I have received from the [Spanish national] team to understand my decision," Rubio said. "Today #family makes more sense than ever. Thank you. I would ask that my privacy be respected so that I can face these moments and be able to give more information when the time is right."

Later this month Rubio was expected to lead the Spanish in an attempt to defend their World Cup title in the Philippines. But he left the team's training camp this week in Madrid and didn't play in Spain's first warmup game Friday night against Venezuela.

Rubio, 32, was the MVP of the last World Cup in 2019 in China. Spain is currently ranked No. 1 in the world ahead of the United States after winning the European championship last summer. The Spanish are already without injured guard Lorenzo Brown, a star in the run to the Eurobasket title.

The 12-year NBA veteran had a subpar year for the Cavs last season as he worked back from a torn ACL, the second of his career, suffered during the 2021-22 season. He averaged 5.2 points and 3.5 assists in 33 games after rejoining the team midseason.

Rubio has two seasons and $12.5 million left on a contract signed with the Cavs last summer.