New York Knicks' first-year guard Nate Robinson says he has his sights set on
making it to the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Robinson, together with Jason Richardson of Golden State Warrirors, joined
the Nike Asia Training Camp, which took place last week at Peking University.
New York Knicks Nate
Robinson (R) drives to the basket past Detroit Pistons Antonio McDyess
during their game in New York March 17, 2006.
"I am now expecting the Beijing Olympics and it's a great Games," said
Robinson on Sunday, the last day of the camp. "It's very hard to get on the
American national team because there are too many great players out there, but I
will try out to make my Olympics."
The 1.75-metre Robinson finished his rookie season with 9.3 points and
shooting 44.4 per cent after being drafted by the Phoenix Suns with the 21st
overall pick last June and then traded to the east coast team.
His career highlight came in February during the Houston All-Star Games where
he outclassed Philadelphia's Andre Iguodala and the Atlanta Hawks' Josh Smith to
dominate the All-Star Weekend Slam-Dunk Contest.
The five-day training camp in Beijing brought together 60 promising teenagers
aged 14 to 18 from around the Asia.
Instructed by Robinson and Richardson, as well as a series of NBA coaches,
the teens went through skills, shooting practice and also physical workouts.
"I was very much impressed by the young players in Asia, they are tall,
strong and also have great passion," said Robinson. "I am also excited to bring
them some NBA experience and help the kids develop their basketball on and off
Yuki Mitsuhara, a 17-year-old from Japan, said he learned from the camp.
"I was dumbfounded watching the two guys dunk just in front of me," he said.
"I certainly want to be a player like them and the camp gives me a chance."
Three campers - Peng Duo of China Dongguan, Liu Xiaoyu and Zhou Peng from
Guangdong Hongyuan - were voted as most valuable players of the camp and
qualified to join the Nike All-America Training Camp next month in the United
Nike Basketball Training Camp was founded in 1986 in the United States and
first came to Asia in 2002.
Some leading Chinese basketball players, including Yao Ming, Wang Zhizhi and
Yi Jianlian have participated in the camp.