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Veteran forward Clifford Robinson re-signs with Nets

NEWARK, N.J. -- Clifford Robinson will play again for the
New Jersey Nets.

Clifford Robinson Robinson

The troubled forward, suspended during last season's playoffs
for violating the NBA's drug policy, has re-signed with the Nets. The team announced Friday that he reached a contract agreement and passed his physical.

Robinson, a key backup for Richard Jefferson and Jason Collins,
turns 40 in December. It was Robinson's second suspension in two
seasons, but Thorn expressed confidence in the 17-year veteran.

"Cliff played very well for us, number one. Number two, he's
very popular with his teammates. Number three, he's a leader in the
clubhouse," Thorn said. "I think he felt sort of an obligation
toward us, since it ended on a sour note last year."

Robinson's age did not appear to be a concern.

"He played around 20 minutes a game last year. But it depends
how he plays and how other people play," Thorn said. "He had a
lot left in the tank last year, so we'll see."

Robinson said he still can contribute to the team, which did not
disclose terms of the deal.

"It's not going to be my 18th year for nothing," he said. "It
was the best scenario to come back and play with the Nets. We had
good chemistry."

Robinson was suspended for five games during the Eastern
Conference semifinals against the Miami Heat. The series was tied
1-1 at the time, and the Nets lost the next three games to the
eventual champions. He averaged 6.9 points and 3.3 rebounds last
season.

Without discussing specifics about the cause of his suspension,
Robinson said he has taken steps to prevent a recurrence. He was
suspended for five games in February 2005 while playing for Golden
State. Players are suspended for five games for a third positive
test for marijuana.

"I could have made better choices. I could have sought out
someone to talk with, and I didn't do that," he said.

Robinson became a free agent in June when the Nets declined to
exercise a $2.5 million option on his existing contract. That gave
the two sides a chance to arrange a new deal.

Robinson had 23 double-doubles last season, twice scoring
20-plus points. His career average is 14.6 points and 4.6 rebounds
with five different teams.

The Associated Press and SportsTicker contributed to this report.