Just last year, Miami Heat forward Duncan Robinson was trying to make a name for himself on a two-way contract.
Robinson split his time between Miami and Sioux Falls, S.D., home of the Heat's G League affiliate. He would fly across the country on last-minute commercial flights whenever the team needed him.
A year later, Robinson no longer flies coach. He earned a guaranteed roster spot late last season and is one of the several Heat players in the middle of breakout years. Robinson will participate in the 3-point contest during NBA All-Star Weekend, putting him on the grandest of stages.
He's come a long way since starting his college career at Division III Williams, transferring to Michigan and going undrafted in 2018. Robinson, who ranks fourth in the league with 191 3-pointers, recently spoke to Sports Illustrated's Rohan Nadkarni to discuss his ascent. He is averaging a career-high 12.6 points and started 49 games.
“Opportunity is a huge part of it. I’ve improved and grown a lot as well,” said Robinson. whose 43 percent from the 3-point line ranks fifth in the league. “My biggest improvement, something I really got to practice a lot in the G League, is flying around, flying off screens and handoffs, being aggressive in those settings. And just developing that mentality to always have shots. Part of that is confidence and also understanding what your role is.”
Robinson is on pace to break the Heat's single-season 3-point record of 227, set by Wayne Ellington in 2017-18. Robinson will compete in the 3-point contest Saturday against Joe Harris (Brooklyn Nets), Trae Young (Atlanta Hawks), Zach LaVine (Chicago Bulls), DeVonte Graham (Charlotte Hornets), Buddy Hield (Sacramento Kings), Dāvis Bertāns (Washington Wizards) and Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns)