Mitchell Robinson’s expanded shooting range still just tease for Knicks


LAS VEGAS — The wait is still on.

Any expansion to Mitchell Robinson’s game from his stout rookie season will have to come during preseason in October.

The second-year 7-foot-1 center has talked up his offseason work on mid-range and 3-point shooting, but in his four summer league games, it never materialized.

Robinson still showed out as a shot-blocking menace, totaling 14 in the four contests. He still fouled a lot (22). And he still scored on a plethora of alley-oops.

On one play Wednesday versus the Lakers, the Bayou Blocker took a pass behind the 3-point stripe, dribbled but got fouled before he could launch.

“I got that in my bag, but I didn’t want to bring it out all the way,’’ Robinson said late Wednesday after going for 13 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks. “But I got the foul. It’s just something I’ve been working on. Next year, I’m shooting 3s. I can shoot them. I shot them in high school. They ain’t that much farther. I’m going to continue to work on it.”

Butch Stockton, Robinson’s coach at Chalmette High in Louisiana, attended summer league and has sworn since Robinson was drafted he was a solid 3-point shooter back then.

Knicks summer league coach Jud Buechler said Robinson still needs to do what he does best, but they are attempting to create a mid-range game for him.

Mike Miller, the G-League coach who will soon be officially promoted to David Fizdale’s defensive assistant, had been out in New Orleans working with Robinson.

“He’s done a real nice job working with our assistant coaches on his 8- to 10-foot jump shot,’’ Buechler said. “He just really hasn’t had the opportunity. He knows what he does well — screen and roll to the rim and catch lobs. He’s doing a great job of that. In continuing to expand his game, he hasn’t passed up any shots but really hasn’t had any either.’’

It’s unlikely Robinson plays in the consolation finale Friday or Saturday, but he’ll be back in Las Vegas Aug. 3 for the week-long U.S. Select Team training camp. Young prospects will scrimmage against the U.S. World Cup Team.