The Los Angeles Lakers felt compelled to keep Thomas Robinson after he out-hustled his competition last summer. Robinson had initially been playing in informal games at the Lakers practice facility when his physical prowess and motor caught the eye of the Lakers front office, resulting in a training camp deal that eventually turned into some playing time in preseason and finally a spot on the roster.
Despite being drafted with the 5th overall pick by Sacramento in the 2012 NBA Draft, Robinson had been something of a nomad in the NBA, bouncing to five different teams before ending up in Los Angeles. He had a solid season with the Lakers, displaying an impressive ability to rebound the ball, but he is now on the market again as a free agent.
In an interview with Alex Kennedy of Hoops Hype, Robinson expressed interest in staying with the Lakers:
“I could definitely see myself re-signing with the Lakers,” Robinson said. “Business-wise, family-wise and basketball-wise, it makes sense for me. I have a lot of things going for me out here – there are so many opportunities and resources and people I connected with in Los Angeles who helped me. With my family, we were able to get comfortable. It would mean a lot to just stay put here.
“When you play for the Lakers, you’re on a bigger stage and I think that actually helped me. When you play well here, people notice that. I don’t really care about how I’m perceived, but I did notice a shift in how people think of my game this past year and it was because they saw me play more.”
While Robinson never lived up to the hype he had coming out of college, he still proved that he can be a valuable contributor. In just over eleven minutes of playing time, Robinson grabbed 4.6 rebounds, 0.5 steals, and scored 5.0 points per game.
However, it’s not clear whether the Lakers need another big man on their roster. They just waived reserve center Tarik Black, and with the addition of rookies Kyle Kuzma and Thomas Bryant, minutes in the front court are extremely limited.