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Report: Sixers claim Thomas Robinson off waivers

Portland Trail Blazers v Phoenix Suns

PHOENIX, AZ - JANUARY 21: Thomas Robinson #41 of the Portland Trail Blazers reacts during the second half of the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center on January 21, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Suns defeated the Trail Blazers 118-113. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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There was a time when Thomas Robinson was so highly thought of he was the No. 5 pick in the 2012 draft, taken in front of guys like Damian Lillard and Andre Drummond. And at the time some thought No. 5 was too low for a guy with this kind of athleticism.

But drafting is an inexact science. To say the least.

On the day of the trade deadline, Robinson was sent from Portland to Denver as part of the Arron Afflalo trade. However, rather than have Robinson suit up in the powder blue the Nuggets just agreed to buy him out. After that, he planned to sign with the Brooklyn Nets for the rest of the season.

But before he could sign in Brooklyn Robinson had to clear waivers — and he did not clear, the 76ers jumped in, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

The Philadelphia 76ers have acquired forward Thomas Robinson through a claim in the NBA’s waiver process, league sources told Yahoo Sports....

The Sixers needed the sum of Robinson’s remaining salary to honor the obligations of the collective bargaining agreement that dictate a team needs to reach within 90 percent of the NBA’s salary floor before season’s end – or pay out that shortfall amount equally among the rest of the players on the roster. Robinson’s $3,678,360 salary pushes the Sixers over the salary floor. Denver is no longer responsible for paying Robinson’s salary.

The Sixers can waive Robinson and meet their financial obligations. However, they plan to keep him on the roster and take a look at him to see if he fits whatever the heck it is they are doing in Philly (at some point all these assets need to become players).

If the Nets still think there is potential in Robinson — he can rebound and he’s shown flashes of playing with the energy he would need to be part of an NBA rotation — they can do it this summer. On offense Robinson still gets most of his shots near the rim where he is a pedestrian finisher, plus he turns the ball over a lot. But the Blazers found a use for him as an energy guy off the bench last season, it’s just that the addition of Chris Kaman cut off his minutes this season (and Robinson struggled with turnovers, among other things).

But he’s athletic big man, he’s going to get another chance. Somewhere.