When Nate Robinson came to the Chicago Bulls this season, few knew that they had struck gold. Most Bulls fans have come to realize that when Robinson is at his best, his performance is easily worth the price of admission.
Who else can get run over by a mac truck named LeBron James in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, get stitched up and not only live to tell about it, but lead his team to a decisive victory? Look no further than Nate Robinson, the guy who literally leaves his blood and guts on the floor.
Mr. Excitement, also known as Krypton-Nate, gives the Bulls instant offense in his versatility as a scorer, shooting the ball exceptionally well from downtown and attacking the basket mercilessly. Robinson, a three-time NBA Slam Dunk Champion has an aggressive style of play that’s more contagious than this year’s flu virus and more entertaining than the latest blockbuster flick. If you watch closely, occasionally he breaks out into a dance and invites the crowd to join him after he throws down a dunk or hits a big outside shot. It’s no wonder that he’s been dubbed Mr. Excitement by Bulls announcer Stacey King.
Or you can call him Nate The Equalizer. In a game played last month with the Toronto Raptors, Robinson (5’9”) was pitted against Rudy Gay (6’8”) on a jump ball. Robinson, always the smallest guy on the court, gave up on the jump. Instead, once Rudy Gay smacked the ball Robinson made a bee-line for it and took a shot. Though the Raptors were given possession and Robinson’s jump ball infraction was deemed a violation, it’s this kind of crafty and competitive spirit that makes him a crowd pleaser.
During the postseason, Robinson is shooting 50.4 percent from the field and averaging nearly 20 points per game. His fourth-quarter feats have been compared to Bulls legend Michael Jordan and he’s one of only two Bulls players to play in every game this season, which makes him indispensable to this year’s injury-plagued Bulls team.
At the end of this year, Nate Robinson becomes a free agent. Defensively, the Bulls demonstrate genius, offensively they are challenged without him. The Bulls’ organization would be very smart, indeed, to keep Robinson on their roster. Although Robinson can be streaky on offense, he’s always looking to shoot.
When asked whether he has ever been afraid to take a shot, Robinson smiled and, as reported by ESPNChicago.com, replied, “Probably the last time I went to the doctor.”
Nate Robinson doesn’t like needles, but he’s never met a shot he didn’t like.
Hollie M. Woods is a writer for Rant Sports covering the Chicago Bulls and the NBA. “Like” her on Facebook.