One year after spurning the Minnesota Timberwolves following the 2009 NBA Draft, Ricky Rubio has become more comfortable with joining the team for the 2011-12 season.

“Rubio’s arrival won’t happen for at least another year, but he told the Associated Press in Barcelona, Spain, that he has warmed to the notion of playing in Minnesota: “They have the best possibility because they hold my rights, and they’ve shown me how much they want me,” he said. “And for that, I have to be thankful toward them.”

The point guard also told his possible future coach that his timetable hasn’t changed: He intends to exercise a $1.4 million opt-out clause from his six-year Spanish League contract when it becomes available 13 months from now and play in the NBA beginning with the 2011-12 season.

“It was consistent with everything we’ve said all along,” Kahn said. “I fully expect to see Ricky in a Wolves uniform after next season.”