Nuggets’ Robinson misses Bulls
by Sean Highkin, USA TODAY Sports
CHICAGO — The most memorable moment of the Chicago Bulls’ 2013 playoff run came at the hands of Nate Robinson. The undersized, occasionally reckless veteran guard exploded for 34 points off the bench to help the Bulls pull off a 142-134 triple-overtime victory over the Brooklyn Nets in Game 4 of their first-round series. With Derrick Rose sitting out the whole season and Joakim Noah playing through a foot injury, someone had to step up. And that savior came in Robinson’s 5-foot-9 frame.
Fast-forward to the eve of the 2013-14 season’s tipoff — Rose is back and looking as good as he ever has, and Robinson has moved on, signing a two-year, $4.1 million contract with the Denver Nuggets. Even though the Bulls opted not to re-sign him, the playoff run will forever hold special meaning for Robinson.
“It’s something special to me,” Robinson said before the Bulls’ 94-89 preseason-closing win against the Nuggets. “It was a special season and a great group of guys, man. And I miss it. I’d be lying to say I didn’t, but the guys over there, they showed me so much love — the coaching staff, the organization, the fans. It was a great run.”
Robinson had a fairly forgettable game against his former team, failing to score a point and shooting 0-for-5 from the field while committing four turnovers in 25 minutes. With the Bulls last year, he became a go-to scorer as their other stars battled injuries. In Denver, he’s one of a crowd of wings that includes Wilson Chandler, Evan Fournier, Randy Foye and — when he returns from a torn knee ligament — Danilo Gallinari.
Robinson made no secret this offseason of his desire to stick around in Chicago, but he says he holds no ill will towards the organization for not re-signing him, even going as far as to say he understands the move.
“Everybody knew I wanted to come back, but they had different things in mind” he said. “They signed a great shooter in (Mike) Dunleavy, they got a good rookie (Tony Snell), they have a great team. Plus, they got D-Rose … [For more on Denver Nuggets' Nate Robinson misses Chicago Bulls, click here.]