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Integrating Nate

Posted by Julian Benbow, Globe Staff  February 22, 2010 12:04 PM

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The Celtics have to integrate him at a point when the Celtics bench is playing as consistently as it has in a while, averaging 30 points a night on the Celtics four-game West Coast trip. Glen Davis hit the boards hard, Rasheed Wallace is drifting toward the paint more, backing defenders down and spinning off them, Marquis Daniels just had his best game since returning from his thumb injury.

The argument's been made that in Robinson, the Celtics are getting what they assumed they would get out of Stephon Marbury last year, an explosive and creative scorer off the bench. But adding him to the mix for the final leg of the season makes Robinson an X-factor.

"When you see Nate and what he brings – energy and the fact that he get buckets and create offense for himself – he’s very active," said Kevin Garnett. "I don’t think we’ve ever had had guy with the speed of Rondo in addition to, meaning that he can pick up full court, get steals, be active. So I’m really really excited to see the duo and see how it works.

"We’re going to embrace Nate with open arms, obviously he’s going to have to get our system and everything but I think everybody’s excited to see him added on to our team and see what he brings."

Then there's a matter of making sure his motives line up with everyone else's. Gary Washburn wrote a while back that Robinson gets a $1 million bonus for being on a playoff team, and that the Lakers and Celtics were his top choice. Now, he has to make his top priority a title run.

"It’s going to take all of us," Ray Allen said. "We’ve got to make sure that we welcome him. We’ve got to make sure that he’s comfortable whether it’s on court or off the court. He’s who we need. He’s what we’ve got in this locker room. There’s nobody else coming and we want to go deep in the playoffs. So the better he plays the better we are as a team."

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