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A trip straight through Memory Lane

November 24, 2009

Three the Hardway

Part 2 of 3– He’s listed at 5 feet 9 inches tall and his mouth is as big as his vertical leap, Nate Robinson is not one to be quiet or take a backseat to anyone. He may be the smallest guy on the court but I bet he has the biggest heart. Nate is a New York  kind of guy, his emotions are spray painted on his sleeve and he’s as passionate as any player to walk through the doors of Madison Square Garden.

Nate at the Apple Cup in 2002

Born in Seattle Washington, Nate’s father Jacque was a tailback for the Washington Huskies amassing over 2000 yards in rushing, and is the only college player to win MVP awards at both the Rose Bowl (1982) and Orange Bowl (1985). Nate also followed his fathers footsteps to Washington and played football, he was a starting defensive back  most remembered for his interception in the final minutes of regulation against the #3 ranked Washington State Cougars, leading to a field goal win in triple overtime at the 2002 Apple Cup.

Originally enrolled at Washington on a football scholarship, Nate decided to focus his area of concentration on basketball for the beginning of his sophomore year. He was a 3 time Letterman in basketball leading his team in scoring all three years, his junior season being the most prolific. Nate started all 35 games in 04′-05′  and helped the Huskies tie their best basketball record at 29-6. That season Washington won their first ever PAC-10 conference championship leading to the schools first number one seeding in the NCAA tournament. That spring Nate declared himself eligible for the NBA draft and finished his career at Washington averaging 14 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds per game.

The talented Mr. Robinson

In the 2005 NBA draft Nate was selected 21st overall by the Phoenix Suns, but would be later traded to the New York Knicks for forward Kurt Thomas, joining fellow rookies Channing Frye and David Lee. In New York Nate was reunited with fellow Seattle native and former high school teammate from Rainier Beach Jamal Crawford.

Robinson played in 72 games his rookie year, starting 26 of them, while averaging 9.3 points and 2.0 assists per game. He had a major breakout performance against the Philadelphia 76ers at MSG where he dropped 17 points and grabbed 6 rebounds. Of his 17 points, three came on a game-winning three-pointer at the overtime buzzer over his boyhood idol, the answer Allen Iverson. During that year’s all-star weekend, Robinson won the 2006 slam dunk contest over André Iguadola in a 141–140 unprecedented overtime, although he took 14 attempts to make his final dunk. In his final dunk of the night he jumped over 1986 slam dunk champion Spud Webb and received a perfect score of 50.

His second year as a Knick started off with a bang when he got into a bench clearing brawl with J.R. Smith of the Denver Nuggets, as a result he was suspended for 10 games by the NBA. That year he also participated in the slam dunk contest but lost in the final round to Gerald Green of the Boston Celtics. Nate finished his sophomore year in the league averaging 10 points.

The 08′-09′ season was a break out year for Nate Robinson, he quickly established himself as the teams sixth man under new coach Mike D’antoni’s run and gun offense. That year Nate enjoyed his best season as a professional averaging 17 points, 4 assists in 30 minutes of play per game. In a five game clip spanning the all-star break, Nate averaged 30 points,  7 rebounds and 7 assists per game. This included a 41 point and 8 rebound outburst in Indiana. He also earned himself his second slam dunk championship when he dunked over Orland Magic center Dwight Howard aka Superman, clad in a green Knick uniform leading to his nickname “Kryptonate”.

It's gotta be the shoes

Nate is regarded as one of the fan favorites at the Garden providing high energy off the bench and comic relief with his dancing routines seen during time outs. His energy does sometime get him in trouble with officials and his coaches but there is no doubting the little mans passion. He signed a one year deal during this past off-season and will be eligible to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year.

If Nate can mature and channel his energy he can blossom into one of the leagues most efficient scorers of the bench. His talent is undeniable and he can very well be a compliment to a big free agent signing like Lebron James or Dwayne Wade next year.

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4 comments

  1. good article jedi. i just think that for the the good that Nate brings to the team, there are too many bad qualities in him for me to want to bring him back next year.

    Great athlete, passion, emotion, terriffic. But the immaturity, terrible decision making, lack of defense, and low basketball IQ have prevented to him from really being a guy that you need.

    The incident in the meadowlands was the last straw. Been here 4 years and still hasn’t grown up. i’m willing to see what he does this year…..


  2. fair enough… I’m hoping he improves that stuff over the course of this season. he knows what he has to do for the simple fact that he didnt get 1 offer from another team during the off season


  3. that was casey


  4. […] Part 2 of 3- Nate Robinson […]



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