Robin Lopez suspended one game for bumping ref

Robin Lopez will sit against the Blazers on Friday for making contact with an official.

Suns center Robin Lopez was suspended today for one game without pay for making contact with an official in the second quarter of Phoenix’s loss to the Raptors on Tuesday night. Lopez will serve his suspension Friday night in Portland.

Lopez reacted viscerally to what he felt was a foul on Andrea Bargnani when Lopez received the ball in the post and glared at referee Rodney Mott after being whistled for an unnecessary foul on the other end. At the next timeout, Lopez bumped into Mott while walking off the court toward the Phoenix bench. Mott attempted to get out of Lopez’s way, from the look of the video, but Lopez made no effort to avoid Mott and was immediately ejected.

While Lopez has seen his minutes per game drop to the lowest level since his rookie year, the Suns will feel the effects of this suspension. Without Lopez to back up Gortat, Phoenix will be thin at center against a Blazers team with one of the elite front lines in the game. Extended playing time for Gortat (playing just under 31 minutes per game on the season) isn’t a bad thing by any means; his play is at a career-best level currently, and his conditioning is a blessing in a compressed season. However, the Suns play again on Saturday night — when they’ll have Lopez back — against the Grizzlies and Marc Gasol. Fatigue for Gortat could become an issue.

The suspension will likely necessitate playing Channing Frye at center on Friday night to rest Gortat, potentially increasing the Suns’ reliance on Markieff Morris and Hakim Warrick at the power forward position.

Bad news, all in all, for the Suns and Lopez on the same day that the team chose not to offer an extension to their backup center.

Tags: Robin Lopez

  • shazam

    trade him

  • Tony

    So, Kevin Love officially out of the running to be signed by the Suns since he signed an extension today. In addition, Gallinari also was signed to an extension. So, between Love, Gallo, and Westbrook, none of the top 3 restricted free agents will not be playing for the Suns next season. So Sarver, what’s plan B?? Maybe you’ll have some luck recruiting Howard and Williams, right? (Sarcasm…)

    To the dummies who still believe in this so-called rebuilding phase, what are the Suns rebuilding for? As I predicted, the Suns are not signing any top-tier free agents next season. As such, Sarver will have a ton of cap space, with nobody to spend it on. However, I’m sure he’ll screw up again and overpay some role players.

    Who are the idiots who disagree that Sarver is currently in the top 3 worst owners in the NBA?

  • Scott

    I don’t believe Lopez’s absence is necessarily a bad thing. Frye can play center for the second unit. He was a center in college, and I think he’s better at center than he is at PF.

    Let Frye play at center and Warrick play at PF. Frye will either pull his man out from the basket or be open for a 3. And if he pulls his man out, then there’s just one guy there guarding against Warrick, so we should see a lot of action from one or the other.

    Now I know Frye hasn’t been hitting his 3s this season, but keep in mind that when he was prolific at it, he was mainly playing at center for either the first or second unit. There could be a connection between playing center and having success with his shot.

    I certainly hope Frye does better at C in this next game. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if he is a C at heart and not a PF any more than Turkoglu was a PF.

  • sun also rises

    “Who are the idiots who disagree that Sarver is currently in the top 3 worst owners in the NBA?”

    Nobody around here moron. As usual we find you rolling around in the ashes of the teams latest losses like a pig in its own poo, which I admit is a harsh comparison… for the pig.

    The nice thing about following this site is that a guy can literally go off and have a life (which you should try sometime, Tony) and come back and feel like absolutely nothing has changed.

    oink oink squeeee

  • shazam

    @ sun also rises and steve…whats your position on gay marriage?..never mind im sure you 2 get along just fine living together.

  • Tony

    Sun loser,

    hey douche, I’ve been posting through the Suns good times and the Suns bad times.

    You are so pathetic, you can’t even have a reasonable discussion. Go back to your pathetic existence, where I’m sure you have no assets, own no home, and probably still live with your mom. So enjoy your Sarver blow up doll loser!!!!!

  • steve

    I definitely don’t agree with censorship and I would hate to encourage ip bans on a fan blog, but these two really push the limits of my patience for internet stupidity. btw shazam, I thought we weren’t on speaking terms.

    Back to the issue at hand (thanks tony, for spamming this thread with your mindless hateful babble that was completely irrelevant to the suspension), robin is still acting like the child he is. I don’t know if he really loves the game enough to overcome his inferiority complex. to me, it looks like he’s just screaming, “I’M A VICTIM,” on the court and on the bench. I feel sorry for him in one way though. it’s sad to watch a guy with that much talent fire his arrows so aimlessly.

  • KeZ

    If he cut his hair he might see the basket more clearly……

  • Scott

    @steve -

    I think Robin grew up dependent in some ways upon his brother, and while he isn’t continually out of balance, from time to time he can get that way. Until he finds balance in himself, he probably needs another personality to help keep him on target.

    Lots of people are like that, by the way. Spouses who have been together for a long time, for example, sometimes have difficulty functioning when one of them is missing.

  • Sam Sneak

    The refs this season have been … atrocious to say the least. They don’t get paid much and travel constantly so I suppose high turnover is expected. But I think the stress of the compressed schedule with the nightly abuse a center receives finally caught up to Lopez.

    I know that I let my temper cause me to make some foolish decisions when I was 23 even though I knew the consequences. So I wouldn’t give an isolated occurence too much thought.

    I’ve wanted to do a lot more than bump the refs this season. Pay the big man his money, Sarver. Then consider buying a WNBA team and leave the Suns alone.