Editor’s note: as part of a new series for his podcast, “What about Wright and Nick Wright?” FOX Sports commentator Nick Wright ranks 50 best NBA players for the last 50 years. The countdown continues today with No. 23 player David Robinson.

Highlights of David Robinson’s career:

  • 1995 MVP
  • 10-match all-star match
  • Four-time All-NBA first team, twice second team, four times third team
  • The best defensive player of 1992
  • Four-time general defense first team, four-time second team
  • 1994 Bombing Champion
  • 1991 Champion
  • 1992 Block Champion
  • Newcomer of 1990

There were two different versions of David Robinson, and perhaps neither remembers exactly.

Junior Robinson was one of the major basketball players, earning almost every single award and was sometimes supplemented by Sean Eliat of All Stars for the Spurs franchise, which enjoyed limited success in the playoffs. Elder Robinson occasionally participated in the All-Star Game, which evolved into a productive player and complemented the growing superstar Tim Duncan for the Spurs franchise, which evolved into a dynasty.

“I think historically, [Robinson] a little underestimated if you really immerse yourself in what he did and what he achieved, “Wright said.” He’s an iconic player. “

David Robinson is ranked 23rd on the NBA’s 50 Best Players in 50 Years by Nick Wright

David Robinson is ranked 23rd on the NBA's 50 Best Players in 50 Years by Nick Wright

Before Tim Duncan became the face of Spurs, David “Admiral” Robinson was. The legendary center scored an average of 21.1 points and 10.6 rebounds over his 14-year career, laying the groundwork for San Antonio to become a dynasty. He has won two NBA championships, an MVP award and has been selected by the All NBA 10 times.

For 14 seasons Robinson scored almost every box. But the circumstances are noteworthy. After four years of playing in the Navy and two years of service in the Navy, the Admiral began his career in the NBA at just 24 years old.

Sculpted as a Greek god 7 feet and 1 m tall, Robinson ran like a gazelle, and covered as much land as he wanted. He was an instant, two-way sensation, averaging 24.3 points, 12.0 rebounds and 3.9 blocks to win the rookie of the year. He then led the heels league. He then won the Defensive Player of the Year, while the NBA averaged 6.8 thefts plus blocks.

He then won the scoring title.

He then won the MVP.

Spurs also won a lot, only not in the postseason. They have dropped to three Western champions in six seasons, despite the fact that the Dream Team starting team is producing at its usual All-NBA level. The highest point was an average of 30 and 16 with five interceptions plus blocks against the Lakers in the 1995 conference semifinals. The low point was the next series against the Rockets, as Hakim Olajuwon completely dominated Robinson after expressing distrust over not winning the MVP.

Robinson was a favorite of machine and early analytics for the first seven years of his career, gaining an average of 26 and 13 with more than five thefts plus blocks. He twice took second place in the MVP, twice took second place and each year finished in the top seven. His player efficiency rating so far has been 27.8, which would be the second of all time after Michael Jordan.

“It’s a bit of a flaw, even in the early ’90s, with some basketball algorithms,” Wright said. “They’re going to reward high-performance big men with high rebounds and make them give in to the touch better than they are.”

Everything changed for Robinson and San Antonio in the 1996-97 campaign. Almost the entire season he was removed from the field due to a foot injury, then general manager Greg Popovich became head coach, and after the team with 17 wins took 1st place in the draft, Spurs chose Tim Duncan.

The Twin Towers proved to be the perfect pair, turning Spurs into an eternal contender for the title. Although Duncan did the hard work, aging Robinson was definitely the second best player. In the final victory over the Knicks, he scored an average of 17 and 12 with four blocks plus interceptions.

“The idea that he didn’t play a big part in this is unhistorical,” Wright said.

Duncan’s injury in 2000 ruined Spurs ’re-application amid Robinson’s entry into the sunset of his career and the emergence of the Shaquille O’Neill-Kobe Bryant Lakers. Robinson’s last games came in the 2003 final against the Nets, where he put up 11 and seven with three blocks plus interceptions to help San Antonio win a second title.

“Robinson doesn’t have a bunch of highlights after the season, but a weird post-season sequence,” Wright said. “I think people these days are forgetting how good he was during his peak.”

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