Erik Spoelstra heaps praise on Duncan Robinson, says his production shouldn’t surprise anyone

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Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Erik Spoelstra isn’t surprised with Duncan Robinson’s production this season, and he doesn’t think think other people should be either.

Robinson had 21 points, seven assists and six rebounds against the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night, and his production was a big part of the reason why the Heat were able to walk away with a 112-103 victory.

After the game, Spoelstra was very complimentary of Robinson, saying that he fits seamlessly with both the starting and bench units. He also gave the 29-year-old credit for improving as a screener.

Production like he put up against Toronto hasn’t been an anomaly for Robinson this season. The sharpshooting forward is averaging a career-high 15.0 points per game this season.

He’s also adding a career-high 2.9 assists per game. Some of the statistical improvement can be credited to Robinson’s overall improvement as a player. A lot of it, though, is the result of increased opportunity.

Last season, Robinson averaged just 16.5 minutes per performance. Those were his fewest amount of minutes per game since his rookie campaign in the 2018-19 season. He also started in just one game for Miami last season.

It has been a different story this season. Robinson is playing 29.7 minutes per game during the current campaign, and he’s already started in 11 games.

Some of the increased opportunity that Robinson has been on the receiving end of is the result of necessity. The Heat lost two legitimate floor-spacers in Gabe Vincent and Max Strus in free agency over the offseason, and Tyler Herro has been limited to just eight games of action so far this season due to an ankle injury. As a result, the Heat have needed Robinson to assume a larger role, and he has responded.

Miami will need Robinson to continue his strong play moving forward. A quarter of the way through the season, the Heat sit seventh in the Eastern Conference standings with a record of 12-9. They’ll look to add to their win total when they host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday night.

After the game against the Cavs, the Heat have two straight games against the Charlotte Hornets and then two straight against the Chicago Bulls. Both of those teams are below Miami in the standings, so the games could provide solid opportunities for the Heat to stack some wins.

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Michael is an experienced writer and reporter who has been covering the NBA since before LeBron James decided to take his talents to South Beach. He wore No. 41 on his high school basketball team partly because of Glen Rice's days as a sharpshooter for the Heat, and he is still a proponent of the midrange game.