Nate Robinson’s agent is considering filing a grievance against the Boston Celtics for benching Nate down the stretch and keeping him from earning a $1 million bonus. (Boston Globe)
Representatives of Nate Robinson are monitoring whether the Celtics impeded the guard’s chances of earning a $1 million bonus and are considering filing a grievance, according to NBA sources.
Robinson played in 56 games this season and when the Celtics acquired him from the Knicks Feb. 18, he needed to play in Boston’s remaining 28 games to earn the bonus. Robinson played in 21 straight games before being benched April 4 against Cleveland. He then missed the April 7 game against Toronto, and played a combined 55 minutes in Boston’s final four games.
Robinson’s agent, Aaron Goodwin, facilitated the deal with the Celtics in hopes of getting his client that additional $1 million. Now his representatives are attempting to determine whether the $1 million the Celtics saved prevented them from exceeding the NBA luxury tax, which would cost the team $2 million for surpassing $71 million in player salaries.
Nate and Aaron Goodwin, I’ve got to give it to you guys straight: I’d be more than surprised if Nate’s benching had anything to do with his contract. He was simply bad for the Celtics. He stopped being aggressive and, when a midget whose only purpose in the NBA is to fill the air with buckets starts throwing up doughnuts in the points column, it’s time for said midget to stop receiving playing time.
If this report is true and Goodwin is trying to determine whether the $1 million the Celtics saved prevented them from exceeding the luxury tax, I’d be very surprised. If the luxury tax is at $71 million, the Celtics should be WAY over it. According to HoopsWorld, the Celtics have more than $84,000,000 on the books for this season. That equates to $13 million more than the luxury tax barrier, which equates to $13 extra million they have to pay the league office, which means the Celtics’ owners will be spending $97 million on player contracts this season.
Robinson’s $1 million bonus wouldn’t have put the Celtics over the tax, but they would have had to pay an extra $1 million in tax on top of it, brnging the total of his bonus — from the Celtics’ point of view — to $2 million. Nate would still have only gotten $1 million of that, and the league office would be the recipient of the other $1 million.
Of course, none of the semantics should matter. I’d bet my left lung that Robinson’s benching was due to his play and nothing else. If it wasn’t, then he’d at least be playing in the playoffs, right? Now that the bonus has already been missed, the Celtics would be free to play him in the postseason. But they still aren’t playing him, because he never earned the playing time. So save your time and energy, Aaron Goodwin, and let this one be. Nate’s bummy play is why he’s getting all those splinters now, and there is no other reason.
The only grievance that should be filed is by the Celtics, for getting swindled into giving up both Eddie House and Bill Walker for Robinson.