Robin Lopez was signed to a one-year, $7.3 million contract from the Washington Wizards. People look at that contract right away and assume that Lopez was not worth it, but his fit with the Wizards is perfect.
For one, General Manager Tommy Sheppard made it known that Thomas Bryant was going to be the starter at the start of the season. That made potential free agent big men look somewhere else. Tommy has made it clear that he sees Thomas Bryant as the future center for the Washington Wizards and he didn’t want a potential free agent to ruin his development. Robin Lopez is a great locker room presence and will be a great mentor to help further develop Thomas Bryant.
Another reason why Lopez is a great signing for the Washington Wizards is that he addresses the Wizard’s rebounding and defensive issues. People consider Lopez to be a subpar rebounder because he was 13th in rebounding percentage on the Bucks last season despite being 7 feet tall. However, people don’t realize that he is a great team rebounder. Lopez has played for 6 different teams throughout his career and not once has his team been worse at rebounding while he’s on the court. Lopez is great at boxing out opponents which allows his teammates to grab rebounds at an easier rate. Defensively, Lopez is an exceptional and smart presence in the paint that doesn’t foul much. He knows where he needs to be at the right time and it shows since opponents only shot 46.1% on layups and dunks attempted by opponents.
Lopez to the Wizards is really underlooked just because he was given a large contract. If things don’t go as planned, Lopez will hit free agency again next season and the Wizards could sign another veteran big man.
Photo: Chicago Sun-Times