It's an enticing matchup two years in the making.

When Ricky Rubio was selected fifth overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2009 draft and Brandon Jennings went 10th to the Milwaukee Bucks, basketball fans were eager to see the young point guards face off.

But Rubio decided to stay in Spain and play two seasons with Regal FC Barcelona while Jennings became an instant starter with the Bucks. The young Buck helped his team reach the playoffs during his rookie year and led Milwaukee in scoring last season.

Now Rubio, a 21-year-old Spaniard, is taking his first plunge into the NBA waters and will meet the 22-year-old Jennings on the court three times in the next few weeks.

The Bucks and Timberwolves open the two-game preseason Saturday night at the Target Center and will play again Wednesday night in the annual MACC Fund Game at the Bradley Center.

Then the teams face each other on Dec. 27 in the Bucks' regular-season home opener.

"It's just exciting we're all on the same court and able to play in an NBA game, that's the most important thing," Jennings said. "I'm just happy that I can put on my Bucks uniform and go out there and play.

"He's been playing professional basketball since he was 14 or 15 years old, so he's had a lot of experience at the pro level. I'm sure coming to the NBA will be even easier for him."

Rubio is part of a reshaped Timberwolves backcourt that also features point guard J.J. Barea, who helped the Dallas Mavericks win the NBA title in June; and former Bucks guard Luke Ridnour, who signed a multiyear free-agent deal with Minnesota prior to last season.

The Bucks also will be testing their restructured point guard trio of Jennings, veteran Beno Udrih and Shaun Livingston.