Alvin Cyrrale Robertson (born July 22, 1962) is a retired American basketball player who played in the National Basketball Association from 1984 to 1993, and for one final season in 1995–96. Robertson holds the record for the most steals per game played, averaging 2.71 steals per game for his career. He is also one of four players in NBA history to have recorded a quadruple double.
Best known for his defense, the 6'3" Robertson played for ten years after being selected by the San Antonio Spurs with the seventh pick in the 1984 NBA draft out of Crowder Junior College and the University of Arkansas. After five seasons with the Spurs, He finished out his career with the Milwaukee Bucks, the Detroit Pistons and the Toronto Raptors. He also was a member of 1984 U.S. Olympic gold-medal team.
In 1986, Robertson became the inaugural winner of the NBA Most Improved Player Award. This also marked the first of four National Basketball Association All-Star Game appearances for the guard (the others coming in 1987, 1988, and 1991). He also won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award in 1986, and led the league in steals in 1986, 1987 and 1991. Robertson still holds the top career steals-per-game average in the NBA, with 2.71 per contest over 779 career games.
Robertson twice led the league in steals. In 1985–86 he averaged a league-leading 3.7 steals per game, a major factor in his earning the Defensive Player of the Year honor and being selected second-team All-NBA, one of only seven players in Spurs' history to have been selected first, second or third-team All-NBA. He was a four-time All-Star.
Robertson led the Spurs in steals four of the five seasons he was with the club, three times averaging more than three per game. Though he played only five seasons in San Antonio, he ranks second in club history in total steals, with 1,129. During his San Antonio days, he also recorded a steal in a then-NBA-record 105 consecutive games; Chris Paul surpassed it by recording a steal in 108 consecutive games from 2007–2008.
A multi-dimensional player, Robertson is one of only four NBA players to record a quadruple-double (double digits in four statistical categories in a single game) when he registered 20 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists, and 10 steals while playing for the Spurs against the Phoenix Suns on February 18, 1986. He is also the only player to do so with steals as the fourth category (the other three were with blocks).
During the 1993–94 season, the Detroit Pistons traded Robertson to the Denver Nuggets in exchange for Mark Macon and Marcus Liberty. However, he never actually saw any playing time for the Nuggets due to pre-existing back injuries.
Robertson scored the first points in Toronto Raptors' history. Ed Pinckney won the franchise's opening tip-off against the New Jersey Nets, Robertson hit a three-pointer, and the Raptors were ahead 3–0.
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