The Journal Gazette
Friday, February 26, 2021 1:00 am

Mad Ants 109 Long Island 95

Robinson comes up big for Ants

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Devin Robinson has shown a lot during this truncated G League season in Orlando, Florida.

He's gone viral on social media for an thunderous one-handed dunk. He's rebounded in bunches, using his slippery 6-foot-7 frame. He's become a master of taking charges. And he's increased his shooting range.

All of Robinson's multifaceted game was on display Thursday in the Mad Ants' 109-95 victory over the Long Island Nets at HP Field House.

Robinson totaled 17 points – he made 8 of 10 shots, including his only 3-point attempt – and he had 15 rebounds, including eight at the offensive end. He also had two shot blocks and absorbed a Tariq Owens charge in the fourth quarter to preserve a 10-point Fort Wayne lead.

Robinson, who is averaging 14.6 points, 8 rebounds and 0.9 shot blocks this season, has enjoyed being a gritty player who takes charges since he was a sophomore in college at Florida and took three charges against Ole Miss in 2016. He has taken 13 charges so far this season.

“I began to think, 'This might be my niche,' so I just kept trying to get them,” said Robinson, a fourth-year pro. “I try to take at least two of them every game. I'm trying to make a name for myself with the most charges ever.”

Robinson, 25, who has played in eight NBA games with Washington, already has a reputation for being dangerous in the paint – at both ends. He averaged 17.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.1 shot blocks last season while playing for Raptors 905 alongside Oshae Brissett, who had a game-best 24 points for Fort Wayne on Thursday.

The Mad Ants (4-6), who have won three of their last four, are 11/2 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot with five games remaining in the regular season. Naz Mitrou-Long had 16 points for the Mad Ants.

A key to them upending Long Island (4-6) was outrebounding the Nets 58-35, aided by Brian Bowen II's 14 points and 10 rebounds and Amida Brimah's six points and 10 rebounds.

“We just were sticking to our same game plan,” Robinson said. “We knew they weren't going to be good defensively, so they wouldn't be good rebounding, and we just kept attacking and kept crashing. The ball just bounced our way today.”

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