Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 3/28/15
Portland Trail Blazers: Robin Lopez Means BusinessIf you would have told me before the season started that Robin Lopez would be averaging 11 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.7 blocks, while shooting almost 54 percent from the field and 80 percent at the line; I wouldn’t have believed you. But that’s exactly what he is doing. Lopez has been starting at center all season and has proved he is a legitimate big man in the league. Going into the offseason, the Trail Blazers needed a big man to sure up their defensive woes from the 2012-13 season. General manager Neil Olshey traded in the defensively challenged J.J. Hickson for Lopez in hopes of those issues being solved. I don’t think even Olshey imagined that Lopez would be playing this well. At that point Lopez seemed like a short term fix considering the tight budget the Blazers had while trying to greatly improve their league-worst bench from the previous season. Olshey faced a lot of scrutiny for not going after a bigger name at center. LaMarcus Aldridge was growing impatient during the summer because of his frustration with the Blazers missing the playoffs for another year. Word around the media spread that if the Blazers didn’t make big improvements to their roster (especially at center) that Aldridge would either demand a trade or walk at the end of his contract. The result? Olshey was able to sign Lopez, Mo Williams, Dorell Wright and Earl Watson, while also trading for Thomas Robinson and adding C.J. McCollum in the draft. So for the Blazers fans that were angry about Olshey’s moves (and many were), now is the time to kiss his feet and be thankful for having a good GM. Not only do the Trail Blazers have a legitimate starting center (sorry J.J. Hickson) but they also have a decent bench to relieve the starter of some minutes. Lopez just fits the Blazers Rip City culture. He is a hard-nosed player that plays with a lot of emotion. It would be silly not to say Lopez is a big reason why the Blazers are sitting at fifth in the Western Conference; just 4 ½ games back from first place. That would be the third best record in the Eastern Conference for those who keep track. Lopez is making a case for the NBA’s Most Improved player, but he would be up against some stiff competition with Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan, Phoenix’s Goran Dragic, New Orleans Anthony Davis and Indiana’s Lance Stevenson all playing very well this season. With that being said, Lopez is still underrated in the NBA. This is why some many teams drool over the next best big man that enters the league. Post players are just that important in the NBA and if teams want a good shot at winning games they need a quality center or power forward. After six years in the NBA, Robin Lopez has proven he should be the Blazers center for several years to come. It’s about time the Blazers had a center they can rely on. isportsweb | isportsweb - Sports in Perspective
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: NFL looking into Bill Belichick's camera ideas

Saints CB Brian Dixon arrested in Miami

CC Sabathia goes off about spring training stats

Kentucky remains unbeaten after thrilling win over ND

Alabama DT arrested on domestic violence charges again

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

John Calipari blasted for postgame interview

WATCH: MJ, Tom Brady play pickup game in Bahamas

WATCH: Wrong national anthem played for El Salvador

WATCH: Russell Wilson smashes HR in Rangers BP

John Fox: Jay Cutler will have to earn starting QB job

Report: Shaka Smart, Gregg Marshall candidates for Texas

WATCH: Kris Letang hospitalized after hit

Aaron Rodgers, sports writer get into it over on-court access

Sam Dekker's hot shooting sends Wisconsin to Final Four

Jim McElwain complains about Florida roster

Mark Few: I put Coach K up there with John Wooden

WATCH: Enes Kanter embraces boos in return to Utah

Mariners prospect dies from boat accident injuries

T.J. Ford sends heartfelt tweet about Rick Barnes

Bruins coach suits up as backup goalie

Tennessee fans show love for Bruce Pearl on campus rock

Louisville guard turned off phone after clutch NC State win

Steve Spurrier hung out with Kenny Chesney before concert

Trail Blazers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: NFL looking into more cameras

CC Sabathia goes off about spring stats

John Fox: Cutler will have to earn job

Texas eyeing Shaka Smart, Gregg Marshall?

WATCH: Brady jumps off cliff in Costa Rica

WATCH: 2 Chainz beats Nique in HORSE

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Notre Dame vs. Kentucky

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Arizona vs. Wisconsin

NFL owners chose cost over game integrity

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

James Harden and the collective consciousness

Hottest coaching seats in NBA

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.