Knicks Preview: Keys to Defeating the Charlotte Hornets

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Nov 10, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Raptors forward

Luis Scola

(4) has his shot blocked by New York Knicks center

Robin Lopez

(8) at Air Canada Centre. The Knicks beat the Raptors 111-109. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

3. Protect the Paint

In Al Jefferson, the Charlotte Hornets have one of the most dominant post players in the NBA. Jefferson was named All-NBA in 2013-14 and has averaged a double-double in four different seasons.

These are the type of games that Robin Lopez is being paid to thrive in.

According to, Jefferson was No. 7 in the NBA in points via post touches in 2014-15. He jumped to No. 4 when his production was measured on a per game basis behind only Dwight Howard, Tim Duncan and Nikola Pekovic.

Jefferson’s 3.0 field goals made off of post touches ranked No. 2 in the Association.

The good news for New York is that Lopez has been playing quietly elite interior defense. Per, he’s limiting opponents to 37.9 percent shooting when he meets them at the rim.

Amongst players facing at least 5.0 field goal attempts at the rim per game, that ranks No. 5 in the NBA.

Next: The Other Guys