11. Truck Robinson
Truck Robinson went from a second-round draft pick in 1974 to a two-time All-Star in 1981. The 6’7 forward led the league in rebounding in 1977-78 and he scored over 21 points per game in back-to-back seasons to close out the 1970s. He was an elite forward that earned the nickname “Truck” because of his physicality.
The New York Knicks did a challenging trade with the Suns in 1982 as Robinson went to the Big Apple for Maurice Lucas. Both players were 30 years old and were multiple-time All-Stars. Robinson struggled in the playoffs for the Suns and the Knicks missed the postseason in Lucas’ lone season in the Big Apple.
Phoenix certainly won the trade as Lucas was an All-Star in 1983 and helped the team advance to the conference finals in 1984. The Suns traded him to the Lakers in 1985 for two second-round picks.
Robinson’s production dropped off mightily with Knicks, but the team reached the second round of the playoffs in back-to-back years. Injuries limited him to just two games in 1984 before the forward retired at 33. It was a regrettable trade, but New York could have traded Robinson before the tires completely fell off at the end of his career.