Update: The Nets have signed Thomas Robinson, details here.
Andray Blatche is coming off a stellar season in China, and Thomas Robinson is about to complete his buyout with the Denver Nuggets. The Brooklyn Nets have expressed interest in both Robinson and Blatche but due to the fact the Nets hold only one roster spot there is only room for one, who will it be?
The Nets aren’t the only team looking to sign Blatche. The big man is receiving strong interest from the Miami Heat, who just lost Chris Bosh for the season due to blood clots. China is also calling for Blatche to come back. In China Blatche averaged 31.1 ppg, 14.6 rpg and 5.1 apg on 51% shooting from the field.
The moral of this story, Andray Blatche is intending to get paid, and while he has stayed loyal to Brooklyn, consistently rocking their gear, the Heat offer playing time and the CBA offers more money than Brooklyn can.
As of right now the Nets are currently in a “holding pattern” in terms of signing Blatche, but if you look at his Twitter it seems like he is still a Brooklyn fan.
On the court, Blatche brings a unique skillset that is hard to find in the NBA. He is a big man that can handle the ball like a guard and step out and shoot jump shots while also maintaining his strength in the post. He can play either power forward or center. The only comparison that does Blatche justice is a poor man’s version of Sacramento Kings’ C DeMarcus Cousins.
In his last stint with the Nets Blatche averaged 11.2 ppg and 5.3 rpg. At 28-years-old Blatche still has time left in the NBA, but Brooklyn does not offer the optimal situation for him.
In the above clip you can see Blatche’s ball handling skills take him to the hoop for the nice dunk over Kyle O’Quinn.
Blatche would likely fit in behind Thaddeus Young but ahead of Cory Jefferson in the rotation. In Miami, with season-ending injuries to both Bosh and Josh McRoberts, Blatche could possibly be the starting power forward or play behind Udonis Haslem. In the CBA Blatche could pursue a bigger paycheck and also be closer to the Philippines, where he plays for their national team.
Blatche is a fan favorite and would be great for Brooklyn, but I just don’t see him signing there with better options available to him.
According to Shams Charania of RealGM, the Nets are one of five teams competing for PF Thomas Robinson, the other teams being the San Antonio Spurs, Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat and Charlotte Hornets.
A little bit of background on Robinson, his career has not started out great. Robinson was drafted fifth overall by the Sacramento Kings in the 2012 draft out of Kansas. After 51 games with the Kings, Robinson was traded to the Houston Rockets and was then signed by the Portland Trail Blazers and played 70 games for them in the 2013-14 season, averaging 4.8 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. At the trade deadline, Robinson was shipped to Denver in the Arron Afflalo deal and will be bought up by Denver on Sunday.
Robinson has struggled thus far in his career, no doubt about that but being drafted number five, you have to think there is some untapped potential.
The Kansas product has a high vertical leap as shown in the video above and is a mobile big man who can run in transition. Robinson’s best on court aspect though has to be his rebounding. He hustles under the glass which makes way for easy putbacks.
Maybe the best part about Robinson, he is still only 23. Robinson isn’t looking to win this year, he is simply looking to prove himself so he can sign a contract next season and Brooklyn could be a good place to do that.
While Blatche is a fan favorite, Robinson is the type of player the Nets should be looking at. A young athletic player who isn’t afraid to hustle.
What do you think?