Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
He's been in Coach Mike D'Antoni's doghouse for so long that it's a wonder he doesn't have fleas, but if you grimly held on to New York Knicks guard Nate Robinson you are about to get rewarded.
D'Antoni announced after Thursday's practice that Robinson would start at point guard on Friday night against the Milwaukee Bucks.
"When a guy deserves to play he deserves to play. There is a moment in the season, you got to seize it and I thought he seized it," D'Antoni said after Wednesday's game.
Robinson has been left out in the cold for most of the season, losing more than six minutes of playing time each night and his totals reflected the drop in opportunities. His PPG went from 17.2 in 2008 to 12.9 and he had a corresponding drops in assists, rebounds and steals.
However, Robinson has been much better of late and saw 35 minutes of action in a 107-85 Wednesday night win over the Wizards, scoring 23 points, while pulling down six rebounds and handing out eight assists. With Chris Duhon in a bit of a "funk" lately, starting Robinson was a viable option.
Over the last 10 games, Duhon is averaging 29 minutes-per-game and posting 3.5 ppg, 1.9 rpg and 6.0 apg on 24% shooting from the field. Meanwhile, Robinson has averaged 24 minutes and scored 12.9 ppg, 2.2 rpg and 4.2 apg on 46% shooting, including a 10-for-15 night on Wednesday.
Duhon is a steady floor leader, but doesn't scare the opposing defenses. Robinson can turn a game around with his high-energy play and excites both his teammates and fans.
Expect a jump in all statistical categories for Robinson who is owned in just 57% of all leagues.
|Nate Robinson Career Statistics|