The Denver Nuggets had a very good season last year, but wound up losing to the Golden State Warriors in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. They came into the off-season looking for any and every way to upgrade their roster and bring more scoring off the bench. Denver believes they were able to do just that with the signing of former Chicago Bulls points guard Nate Robinson.
Nate Robinson had to step up for the Chicago Bulls last season, and start in place of the injured Derrick Rose. Many didn’t expect Chicago to be able to compete in the Eastern Conference without their superstar point guard, but Robinson was able to step up in a big way and help the Bulls not only reach the Playoffs, but advance to the second round as well.
Robinson was able to average 13.1 points and 4.4 assists per game in his starting role last season, and was their emotional leader on the floor. He was able to energize the entire Bulls team, and became a fan favorite immediately. What does he add to the Denver Nuggets? He’s going to be coming off the bench behind Ty Lawson, and will add great bench scoring, and the same energizing effect to the team and fans in Denver as well.
Brian Shaw is the new head coach in Denver, and it will be interesting to see how he works with Robinson. He’s been known to work very well with guards, and could turn Robinson into an even better play-maker in addition to his scoring ability. It will certainly be interesting to see how Robinson’s game changes heading to the Western Conference. He probably will still put up his points, but you can expect him to be asked to make plays for his teammates under Brian Shaw even more than he did in Chicago.
There are still some things that could be a concerning about Robinson’s fit with the Nuggets. The first and foremost concern is that he is a scorer, and sometimes makes bad decisions trying to make plays. Under Brian Shaw, the players in Denver will have to have a team first mindset. Also, even with the Bulls last season Robinson had issues defensively against the more athletic point guards in the league. Standing at 5’9″, he has a major height disadvantage each and every night. He’ll need to work hard this off-season on his foot speed this off-season to improve his defensive ability.
Overall, this should be a very good fit for both Robinson and the Denver Nuggets. The duo of Ty Lawson and Nate Robinson at the point guard position is deadly. Opposing defenses will not get a break from the starter to the bench. Brian Shaw will have one of the most high-powered scorers off the bench in his first year as an NBA head coach.
Despite the concerns that we mentioned earlier in the article, this relationship should work out. Assuming Robinson is willing to give up a few of his shots in order to set his teammates up for better looks, he’ll become a better player and be a perfect fit for the Nuggets. He’ll be fun to watch in Denver, there is absolutely no doubt about that.