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Celtics puzzled by deadline deal with Knicks for Robinson

By Bryan Chu, for
Posted Feb 19 2010 1:57AM

LOS ANGELES -- Celtics newly acquired guard Nate Robinson was a hot pregame topic before the Lakers and Celtics squared off Thursday.

There were more question marks than praise on obtaining the services of the former Knicks guard and three-time Slam Dunk champion.

Celtics coach Doc Rivers didn't feel the team needed a shake-up after posting a 10-10 record in the last 20 games.

"I would've been fine if we hadn't ... we'll see whether that's the right decision or not," said Rivers. "I like this team, I've said it over and over again. I didn't think we needed to make changes."

Asked Rajon Rondo about his thoughts on the trade, he first declined, seemingly frustrated.

"I don't know, I don't know," said Rondo on whether the team needed to make a trade. "I hope it's for the best. Eddie House can drop 20, 30 [points off the bench] too. But [the players] don't make decision, we just play the game."

As for his relationship with Robinson: "We compete. We don't really see each other, we speak, but I try to kill him every time I play him and I'm sure that's probably his mentality."

He did say that Robinson brings "energy and he can definitely score the ball in a million different ways. He's a good defender."

For the Knicks, Robinson averaged 13.2 points in 24 minutes. House averaged 7.2 in 16 minutes.

Rivers did speak on the phone with Robinson, who at the earliest will report in Friday.

"It went well. He was sucking up for [playing time]," said Rivers laughing. "He asked very good questions about defense, his role. I can't wait to get him and get to work with him.

"I just want him to be a scorer. I want him looking at the basket. I don't want him thinking about X-2-Z play. I want him to look at the rim and that's why we're bringing him in here."

Ray Allen didn't feel a trade was necessary.

"I didn't think we were bad," said Allen on the bench production. "We were good."

As for his thoughts on Robinson: "We have to incorporate Nate as quickly as we can," Allen said. "He's a young player in the league, a very up-tempo player, great defender on the ball and he can shoot the ball.

"I think he's played great this year the times we've played him and he's yet to play his best basketball. I think it's a positive for us."

Lakers coach Phil Jackson was a bit perplexed by the trade.

"I really don't know about that," he said. "I have a great respect for House's game. I don't know what you can improve on that credible shooting skill that he has. House really has a strike factor in his game that can really disturb a team."

As far as the other trades that went down, Jackson touched on all but one: Cleveland's acquisition of Antawn Jamison:

"I don't pay attention to that stuff," Jackson said.

Asked four minutes later, Jackson waived off the question again before finally relenting.

"I don't know what that does for them to tell you the truth," he said. "They're going to get [Zydrunas] Ilgauskas back and that's going to be one of those scenarios we see in the NBA where you ship a player out and you get another player and then a player retires and then he comes back in 30 days. I don't know what that does for the league, it's a weird situation. But Jamison is a scorer. I think they'll start him and he's someone that needs to start to be effective in their lineup and then that makes them rather small at the four."

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