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Warriors sign former lottery pick to two-way deal

Jerome Robinson received the Warriors’ final two-way contract

Golden State Warriors v Washington Wizards - NBA Japan Games
New two-way player Jerome Robinson in the preseaosn last year
Photo by Takashi Aoyama/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors haven’t settled their final roster spots, but they have determined who’s getting their two-way deals.

Jerome Robinson was a favorite of former Warriors and current L.A. Clippers executive Jerry West before the 2018 NBA draft. A product of Boston College, Robinson became extraneous in Los Angeles when the rebuilding Clippers turned instant contender by acquiring Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in 2019. The Clippers sent him to Washington in 2020, where he played sparingly before the Wizards waived him in 2021.

The Santa Cruz Warriors added Robinson in early 2022, and he has spent the last two G League seasons there. Last year, he averaged 14.8 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 4.9 assists for the Sea Dubs, and shot 36.3% from three-point range. Robinson’s struggles with his outside shot were the biggest factor keeping him out of the NBA for the last two years - he’s a career 31.3% shooter from deep.

But the Warriors clearly love Robinson, inviting him to training camp last season and retaining him for a second season in Santa Cruz. He joins point guard Lester Quinones, who won Most Improved Player in the G League last season, and center Usman Garuba, a 2021 first-round pick of the Houston Rockets as the Warriors’ three two-way players.

That doesn’t mean those are the two-way players for the rest of the season, as Quinones learned last year. It’s easy to change two-way deals, as happened last fall when Quinones and Quinndary Weatherspoon lost their two-way contracts to Ty Jerome and Anthony Lamb before the season. Golden State had to fill their third two-way spot in order to bring 21 players to training camp, so this isn’t necessarily a commitment to Robinson.

While Robinson is 26 years old, his time away from the NBA helps him here. A player can only sign a two-way if they have less than four years of NBA experience, and Robinson has only played three seasons in the NBA since 2018. That gives him a leg up on other veterans on camp deals like Rudy Gay or Rodney McGruder, who would need a standard NBA contract. Signing a 26-year-old to a two-way deal would be yet another refutation of the maligned “two timelines” plan - they’d have veterans everywhere possible.

All three of the current two-way players will compete for deals with training camp invitees Javan Johnson, Kedric Davis, and Donovan Williams, along with whatever two-way eligible players become available before the season begins October 24. They will not compete with center Jayce Johnson, however, who was waived two hours after being signed.

Don’t worry about Johnson, who was signed and released in order to keep his G League rights. The 26-year-old center looks poised to man the pivot in Santa Cruz again.

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