Get to Know Your Starting Five: Roy Hibbert

Scott Agness | May 21, 2013

Roy Hibbert is arguably the most playful character in the Pacers’ locker room. He’s evolved from an unassuming rookie into one of the most vocal and caring guys on the team. When media surrounds his corner locker to interview him after games, he makes sure that his neighbor, D.J. Augustin, has enough space to get to his locker and change. Hibbert wants to know what is going on with every one at all times. And if he can be a part of an event and help out, he will.

Like a couple months ago, when David West visited the Pendleton Juvenile Correctional Facility, Hibbert wanted to tag along to support his teammate. Before the regular season began this fall, the goofy and playful Hibbert worked with members of Area 55, his fan section at home games, to create a flash mob dance to the hit “Gangham Style.” The video has amassed over 400,000 views on YouTube. He has also made appearances on NBC’s “Park and Recreation.” Area 55 Twitter »   Facebook »

Hibbert is conscious about everything going on around him. He started training in mixed martial arts (MMA) last summer, has a personal chef and is always seen drinking nutrition drinks postgame. He’ll lift weights before games and work out after, if he feels inclined to do so. He asks a lot of himself and his teammates, and will often get fiery late in games when he knows they need to finish it off. One game against the Charlotte, he offered the bench guys $100 each to keep the Bobcats below 80 points. And they did, so he paid up.

Related: Roy Hibbert 2012-13 Photo Gallery »

Hibbert signed a four-year deal last summer to remain with the Pacers, the team that drafted him in 2008 with the 17th selection.

The big fella overcame early offensive woes this season, partly due a wrist injury and the weight of a maximum contract. He started to come on strong around the All-Star break. The combination of West missing six games and Hibbert’s one-game suspension for an altercation with Golden State’s David Lee seemed to help him get his groove back. Whatever it was, the Pacers are much, much better off when Hibbert gets his tip-ins and shots in the restricted area to fall.

Pacers coach Frank Vogel has declared his center as “the best rim protector in the game.” Hibbert finished third in the NBA in blocked shots and he has altered countless others.

During these playoffs, Hibbert has been a big reason for the team’s success. He essentially made the paint off limits or at least “enter at your own risk.” His game-changing stuff of Carmelo Anthony at the rim of Game 6 was the type of moment that Pacers fans will remember forever.

Be sure to check out Hibbert's entertaining persona on Twitter.

Hibbert is averaging 14.0 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.5 blocks per game this postseason.

Get to know the other four members of the Pacers starting five below:

Get to Know Pacers Point Guard George Hill »

Get to Know Pacers Shooting Guard Lance Stephenson »

Get to Know Pacers Small Forward Paul George »

Get to Know Pacers Power Forward David West »

Get to Know Your Starting Five Main Page »

Bonus: Get to Know Pacers Bench Players »

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