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Former Phoenix Suns player Cliff Robinson dies at age 53

25 Apr 2000: Clifford Robinson #30 of the Phoenix Suns walks on the court during the NBA Western Conference Playoffs Round One Game against the San Antonio Spurs at The Alomodome in San Antonio, Texas. The Spurs defeated the Suns 85-70. Mandatory Credit: Ronald Martinez /Allsport

Cliff Robinson, who played for the Phoenix Suns for four of his 18 years in the NBA, died at the age of 53, his alma mater UConn announced Saturday.

Details of his death were not immediately clear.

Robinson played on the Suns from 1997-2001, primarily as a forward, during which he averaged 16.4 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 1.0 blocks in 33.2 minutes per game.

Former Suns teammates Rex Chapman and Steve Nash tweeted about him Saturday morning.

“Devastated with the passing of one of the best teammates ever – Clifford Robinson,” Chapman wrote as part of his message.

Nash quote-tweeted Chapman with more praise about Robinson as a teammate.

“This hurts. GREAT teammate and have great memories starting my career with, Cliffy.”

The height of Robinson’s career came with the Portland Trail Blazers. He was named the 1993 Sixth Man of the Year, made the 1994 All-Star game and was named to two NBA All-Defensive second teams.

Robinson also played for the Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors and New Jersey Nets. His 1,380 career games are the 14th-most in NBA history.

He was named to UConn’s ring of honor in 2007 and to the school’s All-Century men’s basketball team.

“The UConn Basketball family mourns the loss of a legendary player and person, Clifford Robinson,” the school wrote in its message on Twitter. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Cliff’s family at this difficult time.”

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