I’ve really enjoyed it. I think I’ve learned a ton,” said Robinson. “I told the coaching staff that I’ve learned more this year than I have maybe in my whole career about the finer details and just the little things and how they add up. I’ve really enjoyed learning from and playing beside these great players.”
“It’s one of those things where she’s still learning, said Reeve. “This is all a new experience for her, with me. I’m hard on her but you have to be. You’re a point guard. You have to have the ability to make plays. If I have a five-point lead when she goes out there, I expect at least a five-point lead when she leaves. So, she has a tremendous responsibility. What I love about her is that she accepts all of that. She accepts coaching. She improves in a hurry. It’s an upwards trajectory with her.”
Robinson calls being coached by Reeve “amazing” despite being continually pushed. As successful as Robinson has been in her career, it’s evident that she isn’t satisfied with good enough. After all, the goal is to one day hand her the reins to the starting point job once incumbent starter Lindsay Whalen retires. All of this instruction now figures to make Robinson an even better player in the future.
Reeve deliberately runs sets that play to the strengths of her point guard. Robinson’s speed can be lethal in space as few players can keep up with her. By running action that favors her quickness, the Lynx can get Robinson to the rim easily. Knowing that if she buys into her coach’s teachings that she’ll be put in a position to succeed has to be encouraging. Yet, it doesn’t sound as if that was ever a worry.
“Being coachable is one of those things I pride myself on just because you never know a coaching style but we had a talk before I got traded,” said Robinson. “I felt like I was gonna fit well here in the way she pushes me and challenges me to get better every single possession night in and night out, and even in practice. It starts in practice but it’s every single possession. I’ve really enjoyed it.”
As you may have figured, Robinson hasn’t had to do this on her own. She came to the Lynx having played with many of her current teammates with Team USA, all-star games, or playing against them. When her teammates got wind of the trade, Robinson says that Whalen and Sylvia Fowles were the first two to text her. Additionally, her former coach in San Antonio, James Wade, is now a Lynx assistant coach.
Minnesota may be new to Robinson but there were many familiar faces. Among the most helpful, Robinson says, has been Whalen. Sitting in on practice, you see the coach in Whalen shine through. There’s no ego as she points out the nuances of a play or a helpful suggestion to Robinson. Whalen arrived with Reeve and her better to show Robinson the ropes than her?
“Whalen definitely took me under her wing. I watch her like a hawk in practice. Everything she does, I want to mimic and make sure there’s no slippage. All the time I’m always listening to her and watching her,” said Robinson. “I’m thankful I’ve had the opportunity to play under such a great point guard.”
As Robinson continues to work towards the future, her focus remains on helping her team solidify its place in a playoff race with an airtight margin of error. She knows that the team is counting on her to do her part to help that cause.
“I’m looking forward to helping this team and bring my energy off of the bench and just being more aggressive. When I’m the most aggressive, we’ve had the most success. Just making sure I’m playing my game, playing with confidence and playing with poise, and making sure there’s no slippage. That’s really key.”