Robinson ready to prove himself in the NBA

When you're 5-foot-8, you have a lot to prove to NBA talent scouts if you want to play in the league. Washington guard Nate Robinson showed well at least year's pre-draft workouts in Chicago, but opted to return for his junior season and this year he is raising even more eyebrows with his play and athleticism.

"So far I've been to Denver and the (Golden State) Warriors," Robinson told Wednesday while getting ready to head to Los Angeles to visit his grandmother and then the Los Angeles Lakers. "It was great to get around the best players across the country. We did a lot of shooting drills and pick-and-rolls, stuff like that."

In his workouts Nate has displayed a more polished game than he had last year at this time. It's vindication for his decision to return to the Husky basketball squad last year instead of jumping to the league after his sophomore season.

"(The coaches and scouts) were surprised how well I shot the ball," Robinson said. "They were like ‘we knew you could score', but they also said I had good form; good release, good spin on the ball, nice arch. They liked how I shot the same every time. They also like how I can elevate on my jumper.

"They said I improved a lot from last year and that's just a big bonus for me. Hopefully, I can just continue to keep doing the right things and get myself drafted higher."

One man familiar with the Huskies' resident "stick of dynamite" is former Stanford Head Coach Mike Montgomery. Montgomery is now the head man at Golden State. The two had a chance to sit down for about 20 minutes when Robinson visited the team this week.

"He told me I did a hell of a job," Robinson said. "He said it was always tough playing the Huskies and it was a pleasure coaching against me.

"I asked him about the transition from college to the NBA. He said the NBA is getting more college guys who are hungry and they are going to change the game. He said, ‘If you keep it up, you're going to go high. You just keep playing hard like you have your whole life,' and he said I'll be alright."

So where does Robinson think he might be taken in the NBA Draft? It doesn't really seem to matter.

"Honestly, I don't really care, because wherever I go will be a blessing from God," Robinson stated matter-of-factly. "No matter where I go, whether it's the last pick of the second round, first pick of the first round, lottery, or whatever…that is when I'll know where I'm supposed to be.

"Some guys might get mad about stuff like that, but I consider it a blessing. God gave me this talent and I'm going to showcase it. Wherever he puts me is where I'll fit in."

With all the success he has had in his college career - starting as a freshman on both the football and basketball teams; leading the Husky basketball team to its first NCAA tournament appearances in seven years; a number one seed and a Pac 10 championship - one might think Robinson would get complacent. If you believe that, you haven't the slightest clue about what makes Robinson tick.

"I'm going to be motivated wherever I go," Robinson said. "I'm going to stay hungry. I'm going to play hard and give it my all and show the team that drafts me that I'm thankful.

"I'm going to show them that I'm going to play my heart out for them. I just want to get better and better and be one of the best players to ever play the game of basketball."

Robinson's talents haven't gone unnoticed by the local professional team either. He ran into Seattle Sonics Head Coach Nate McMillan before he hit the road for his workouts. The plan is to schedule a workout with the Sonics when he gets back.

He has workouts scheduled with the Lakers on Thursday (May 26th) and Houston on Monday (May 30th). After that he plans to take some time off and does not plan on attending the Chicago pre-Draft workouts.

One person that continues to be on Robinson's mind, and probably the biggest reason that Robinson won't be wearing the purple and gold this winter, is his 6-month-old son Nahmier. Robinson claims he's started to crawl and, "He has two teeth and is getting ready to walk."

"You better tell Husky fans to watch out for my son" Robinson said with a chuckle. "Watch out…He's coming. He's going to be taller than me and better than me."

Husky fans can only hope Robinson is right.

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