Nate Robinson Could Potentially Be NBA Sixth Man of the Year Candidate with Denver Nuggets
With the Denver Nuggets losing Andre Iguodala this summer after the guard declined his player option for the 2013-2014 NBA season, the Nuggets were left to try and bolster their roster with other available guards. Instead of looking for other defensive-minded guards like Iguodala, though, they landed guys like Randy Foye and Nate Robinson, players known more for their offense.
Robinson is undoubtedly the more polarizing of the two between him and Foye, though. Throughout his career, the guard has always been a guy that plays with a ton of energy and can get hot offensively which makes him near unstoppable—but he’s also been a player that could potentially keep jacking up bad looks and shoot you out of a game.
Last season with the Chicago Bulls, Robinson found a bit of new life. With Derrick Rose out for the entire season, that gave Nate-Rob a bigger role in their rotation and he performed admirably. In 82 games last season, Robinson averaged 13.1 points, 4.4 assists and 2.2 rebounds per game on 43.3 percent shooting and solid 40.5 percent shooting from long-distance.
One of the things that made Robinson stand out on the Bulls was his contrasting style to how the Bulls typically play. The Bulls are all about their defense and aren’t exactly known for fifth-gear, chuck ‘em up and pray offense like Robinson is, especially with Rose out with injury.
The Nuggets don’t exactly play the same style as Robinson does, either, but they do play a style that could put Nate-Rob in a more intriguing role.
Robinson will almost unquestionably come off of the bench in Denver this season. However, as he does so, he will be playing in a system that led the NBA in pace last season, meaning more possessions. This Nuggets team likes to attack the rim as well, which often leaves open looks on the wings in transition.
Robinson is a player who can come off of the bench and convert on those opportunities, a type of player that was scarce in Denver last season. If he’s able to do that he could reap the benefits, even possibly putting himself in contention for the league’s Sixth Man of the Year award.
Obviously there are a ton of viable candidates in the league for the award with guys like J.R. Smith, Jamal Crawford and even Jarrett Jack. However, with Robinson it’s never been a question of talent when it comes to reaching his potential, but all about being in the right situation at the right time. Perhaps I’m wrong, but Denver seems like a place where he could succeed.
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