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Robinson declares for NBA draft

 (The Spokesman-Review)
Robinson (The Spokesman-Review)
Associated Press

SEATTLE – Washington guard Nate Robinson, who led the Huskies to a No. 1 seed in this year’s NCAA basketball tournament, said Monday he plans to enter the NBA draft.

“Deep down in my heart,” he said, “I know the right decision is to skip my senior year and enter the NBA draft.

“I know I’m ready to make the jump. It’s been a dream to me ever since I was a young boy.”

Robinson, named to the All-Pac-10 team each of the last two seasons and a third-team Associated Press All-American this year, helped Washington surge from four straight losing seasons to prominence.

He said the decision to leave his teammates wasn’t easy.

“It’s tough because of what we did and what we still could do,” he said. “The sky’s the limit for the upcoming Huskies. They’re going to be great.”

Robinson was UW’s leading scorer at 16.4 points per game as the Huskies set a school record with 29 wins and advanced to the Sweet 16.

A graduate of Rainier Beach High where he led the Vikings to the state title as a senior, Robinson had considered declaring for the NBA after last season, turning in a strong showing at the Chicago Pre-Draft Camp. However, he decided to return, in part because he felt the Huskies could make it to the Final Four.

But Robinson, who recently became a father, now has talked of needing to “provide for my family.”

Generally considered a late first- or early second-round pick, Robinson, is the son of former Huskies running back Jacque Robinson and came to UW on a football scholarship. He started at cornerback as a true freshman in 2002, then decided to concentrate on basketball.

Two other Huskies are considering entering the draft: junior guard Brandon Roy and incoming freshman Martell Webster of Seattle Prep.

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