The Bucks are 39-6 and the best team in the entire NBA. They are the title favorites and one could make the argument that nothing about the team needs to change. However, there is one glaring hole in the roster that could be improved upon and that is backup center. Currently, Milwaukee’s backup center is the 7-foot brother of Brook Lopez, Robin Lopez.
So far this season, Robin Lopez has played in 42 games with an average of 14.3 in each of them. This is the least amount of minutes per game he has averaged since 2011-12 when he averaged 14.0 with the Phoenix Suns. In these minutes, Lopez is averaging 5.5 points per game on 51.0% from the field and 27% from three on almost 2 attempts for game. He has also shot an appalling 51.3% from the free throw line which is a number that could make him nearly unplayable come playoff time. Robin’s Per 36 numbers are nothing to write home about as the look like 14.0 points per game, 6.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.7 blocks per game.
When looking at the advanced numbers when it comes to Robin Lopez, they just show that he is an average player at the very best. This season, he has an offensive rating per 100 of 104 which is currently the lowest mark of his 12-year career. Although, his DRTG of 104 is tied for the best mark of his career. What this should tell people is even though Lopez has been fine on defense, his low production offensively outweighs that. Another advanced number when looking at Robin Lopez is that he has a player efficiency rating of 11.8 which again, is the lowest mark of his career since he was a 20-year-old rookie. His PER is actually worse than guys like Grayson Allen, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and even…Thon Maker. These three guys are generally considered to negatively impact their teams but they still have a higher PER than Lopez.
Robin’s best stretch of the 2019-20 season so far came December 22nd through January 4th when he averaged 10.6 points per game on 66.7% shooting. This, obviously, was short lived considering it only lasted 7 games. That is the very best Robin Lopez can be, a guy who can sometimes average 10 points off the bench for 7 games.
Again, the Bucks are 39-6 and the old adage says to not fix something that’s not broken. Could Milwaukee’s backup center situation be better? You’d be lying to yourself if you said it couldn’t. In the grand scheme of things, Robin Lopez isn’t necessary a good, complete player. However, Robin Lopez is exactly what the Bucks need. He’s not a good center, but he’s really good for this specific team. Although, is that worth 4.8 million per year or could that money be better spent elsewhere? Thankfully, we have the whole rest of the season to decide.