I love Nate Robinson the basketball player. Loved him at Washington, love him with the Knicks, love what he does on the court, love his explosiveness, love his 'spurtability.'
Hate seeing him in the Slam Dunk Competition.
It's not his fault. He's the reigning champ, he was invited back, he's coming back. Good for him. I'd do the same if I was him; if I was the reigning champ of one of the competitions at the All-Star Game, I'd keep on coming back until someone dethroned me.
But the Slam Dunk Competition is not a true 'skill' competition, like, say, 'Fastest Shot" in hockey or 'Three-Point Accuracy' in basketball. It's a freestyle competition, based on both execution and creativity. I watch the Slam Dunk Competition for the same reason everybody else does, waiting to see something new.
But we know what Nate has, we've looked through his bag of tricks. Maybe he'll leap over somebody or do a 360 or go between his legs. That's all nice, but we've seen it already. James Cameron just won the Golden Globe for Avatar. He can't win next year for Avatar again.
Put James White in, or the Air Up There so he can showcase his 720.
Maybe I'm selling Gerald Wallace, Shannon Brown, Eric Gordon, and DeMar DeRozan short -- and I'd be happy to be proved wrong.
The thrust of the competition, though, is innovation. It's what made Julius Erving, Dominique Wilkins, Michael Jordan, and Vince Carter legendary.