It has widely been assumed that the Celtics and Nate Robinson would eventually come to terms on a contract, and today they finally did. Robinson agreed to a two-year deal worth $9 million, allowing the Celtics to keep him in Boston.
This move makes sense for both sides, as they both need each other. Robinson finally learned what it means to be a team player after being traded to Boston mid-season from New York. While with the Knicks he was a me-first player who worried about getting his own buckets before the good of the team. In Boston, he realized what it meant to be part of a team and a winning culture. Doc Rivers and the Boston veterans allowed Robinson to do his thing within the confines of what the team wanted. The structure the Celtics organization provided for Nate allowed him to channel his talents in a way conducive to winning basketball games. Had Robinson not re-signed in Boston, the progress he made as a player this past year would have been diminished.
For Boston, even though Robinson was in and out of the rotation, his value in the playoffs was undeniable. He provides energy that is infectious and instant offense off the bench. His ability to score in bunches is something the Celtics recognized the full value of in this signing. Also, the drafting of Avery Bradley and departure of Tony Allen (signed with Memphis) allows Robinson to shift to the two-guard position with the second unit, which is really where he belongs.
In other notes from today:
* Orlando officially matched J.J. Redick‘s offer sheet from Chicago for 3 years and $20 million. Good move for them. Redick has steadily improved his game over the years and has become more than just a good shooter with high basketball IQ and gritty defense. Didn’t think Stan Van Gundy would let him go, as Redick became his first guy off the bench in the playoffs and was valuable when Vince Carter struggled.
* Chicago signed Ronnie Brewer for 3 years and $12.5 million. After losing Redick, the Bulls rebounded quickly by signing Brewer. This is a solid move for the Bulls, as Brewer is a very athletic two-guard who can run the break with Derrick Rose. Also, he’s a solid defender who should fit in well with Tom Thibodeau’s schemes.
* Matt Barnes was expected to announce his free-agency decision today, but will reportedly take the weekend to think about it more. Barnes said he’s been talking to Miami, Orlando, the Lakers and Dallas, and Detroit initially contacted him at the beginning of the free-agency period.