Robin LopezHornets.com 1-on-1: Robin Lopez

By: Brian Travis, Hornets.com

During a solid 2-1 start to the 2012-13 regular season, no Hornet has been more instrumental to the team’s success at both ends of the floor than Robin Lopez. The 7-foot Stanford product is the Hornets’ leading scorer with 43 total points through three games (14.3 per game), the team’s second-leading rebounder with 7.7 rebounds per game as well as the team’s leader in blocked shots with 2.0 per game. In his first four seasons with the Phoenix Suns, Lopez was always a solid and efficient contributor. However, he has increased his production while filling an increased role in his first three games with New Orleans. Lopez is shooting above his career average from the field at 55.6 percent and is taking nearly three times as many shots as he took last year (12.0 compared to 4.2 field goal attempts per game). As the Hornets look to continue their early-season success, Lopez’s presence in the paint is going to be essential. The fifth-year pro took some time to catch up with Hornets.com:

Hornets.com: What is your quick impression on the three-game start to your Hornets tenure?
Lopez: I’m really enjoying it. We have a lot of great guys on the team. I think we have great chemistry and we really try to get after it on the floor.

Hornets.com: How have you established such great chemistry with PG Greivis Vasquez in the pick-and roll-game?
Lopez: Ever since I first got here we started playing pickup games together and we tried to develop a pick-and-roll chemistry very early.

Hornets.com: Coach Monty Williams complemented you and forward Al-Farouq Aminu’s length and defensive chemistry in the paint. Can you comment on how you’ve developed a defensive presence with Aminu as well as Anthony Davis?
Lopez: I think that that is something we’ve been working on as a team, more than just with one or two other guys. That’s really what our identity is. I think we try to be defined by our defensive prowess and that takes chemistry between all of us.

Hornets.com: Can you explain to Hornets fans why your Twitter handle is @eegabeeva88? Also, is there a reason you’ve returned from a two-year-plus Twitter hiatus?
Lopez: EegaBeeva is a tribute to an obscure comic book character (Editor’s note: Eega Beeva was a futuristic human/alien from the Walt Disney Mickey Mouse Universe comic). I’ve started tweeting a lot more recently as a result of some requests to do so from fans once I moved to New Orleans.

Hornets.com: After the first two games at the Hive what are your early impressions of Hornets fans?
Lopez: I love it, I love the energy they bring. I really love the fan base. They’re really the type of fans that are still in the game whether you’re up 20 (points) or down 20 (points) in a game. They’ll always have our back.