HoopsHype Brook Lopez rumors

February 10, 2014 Updates

Lopez was sitting on a chair inside Barclays Center’s interview room, meeting with the media for the first time since suffering his season-ending injury. It has only been in the last few days he has been allowed to leave his house on a regular basis, after being mostly bedridden for the past several weeks following surgery early last month. He admitted the hardest part has been being stuck in bed with little to do but think about his current situation. “Yeah, I mean you can only sleep so much,” he said with a weak smile. “I tried to read a lot, write and draw and stuff like that. “But you do get to thinking. It’s inevitable. You try to focus on the positives. In my case, I just go crazy if I dwell on that stuff for too long.” New York Post

February 9, 2014 Updates

Lopez, at 7-0, underwent surgery again in January. Doctors reconstructed his foot to re-distribute the weight and the pounding he sustains. There are absolutely no guarantees but Lopez is stridently optimistic. “It’s going to work,” Lopez said this week in his first public comments since his Jan. 4 operation. “I’m definitely thinking that way. Some people say, ‘If this doesn’t work …’ I won’t think that. I’m definitely thinking the other way.” New York Post

Walton predicted an emotional down time for Lopez. But he insisted a huge ally is Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov. “This is where playing for a great owner like Prokhorov, who is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done, is beneficial,” Walton said. “Brook will go through all the emotions of, ‘This is my fault, I’m letting the team down.’ “You can’t panic, can’t go crazy and start blaming everybody. You’ve got to get healthy,” Walton said. “Nobody can predict health.” New York Post

February 4, 2014 Updates

King is confident the Nets could play this way with Lopez, in part because of his shooting from the center spot. But even he acknowledges meshing everyone and staying “small” would be a challenge. “Brook is a great scorer,” King says, “but now, when we’re smaller, defensively we are a little better.” Grantland

January 9, 2014 Updates

Shaun Livingston appears to have learned from filling in for Williams earlier this season, playing his second straight strong game in the Williams’ absence. And while Williams sat out Monday and got a cortisone shot and platelet-rich plasma injections in both ankles Tuesday, Brooklyn’s team doctor doesn’t expect him to need surgery or miss much time. “I can’t divulge a ton, obviously, but what I can say about Deron is that he’s a worker. And I just think — as with our other player, Brook Lopez — has just suffered a little bit of bad luck in regard to his ankles,’’ Dr. Riley Williams said on SiriusXM NBA Radio. “What I can say is that I don’t think there’s anything going on with him that’s a serious issue over the long-term, and the guy wants to play. New York Post

January 8, 2014 Updates

On Tuesday, the NBA approved a $5.25 million Disabled Player Exception for the Nets to help cover the loss of Lopez, out for the rest of the season with a broken foot that required surgery. The Nets have until March 15 to use the exception. But to do so would come at a hefty cost, though the exception can be used in a trade. The Nets would need to create a roster spot, and for every $1 million they spend would end up paying $4 million in additional luxury taxes. So a source termed using the DPE “unlikely.” New York Post

January 7, 2014 Updates

The Brooklyn Nets were notified Tuesday night that they've been granted a $5.25 million Disabled Player Exception for center Brook Lopez, according to sources familiar with the league's decision. The exception expires March 10. According to ESPN salary cap expert Larry Coon's website, the exception allows the Nets to sign a free agent to a one-year contract for the amount of the non-taxpayer mid-level exception ($5.15 million) plus $100,000, or trade for a player in the final season of his deal who is making no more than $5.25 million. ESPN.com

For Brooklyn to use the full exception and pay the ensuring luxury-tax bill, it would cost the Nets approximately an additional $20 million on top of the $180 million-plus in roster salary and taxes they're already paying this season. The Nets have until March 10 to use the exception through a free-agent signing or a trade. The Nets have a full roster of 15 players, so they would need to clear a roster spot to make use of the exception. Yahoo! Sports

January 5, 2014 Updates

The Nets have applied for the Disabled Player Exception on Brook Lopez and expect to hear from the league within the week on whether the NBA will grant it, says an NBA source. The Nets still are unlikely to use the $5 million exception but want to have it on hand if an opportunity arises. Under the CBA, a team that loses a player for the season can apply to the league for a DPE. The amount of the DPE is limited to half the disabled player's salary or in the case of a max contract, an amount equal to the full MLE ... $5.15 if used to sign a free agent, $5.25 million if used in a trade (the MLE + $100,000). The team had until January 15 to file for the DPE. It can be used in a trade up until the February 20 deadline and can be used to sign a free agent up until March 15. At that point, it expires. NetsDaily

The surgery on Brook Lopez's right foot Saturday was meant to not only repair a broken bone but to restore the rest of his career. Doctors performed an extra procedure on the Nets center, moving another bone in an effort to prevent the injury from occurring again. General manager Billy King said the surgery was successful and rejected any suggestion that the additional procedure, a first metatarsal osteotomy, is a cause for long-term concern. "I'm not going to speculate. Right now, he had it, it was successful and I expect him to have a full recovery and be back next year," King said, adding that the team's leading scorer is expected to take part in offseason workouts this summer. Newsday

The best-case scenario for Lopez’s recovery would be to mirror that of former Cavaliers big man Zydrunas Ilgauskas. The 7-foot-3 Lithuanian big man had multiple issues with his left foot early in his career before having a complicated surgery that included a first metatarsal osteotomy, in 2001. After playing in just 29 games over the previous three seasons because of repeated issues with his left foot, Ilgauskas went on to play 10 more years in the NBA without any further complications from his prior injuries, making well over $100 million, being selected to a pair of All-Star teams and becoming a key piece of the Cavaliers’ playoff teams during LeBron James’ tenure there. “Different guys’ bodies react differently,” King said. “Different guys have had different things done, and they’ve had different success.” New York Post

January 4, 2014 Updates
December 30, 2013 Updates

Pau Gasol for Brook Lopez? It would seem, on the surface, that merely posing such a question is a moot point given that Lopez is out for the season after re-breaking his troublesome right foot. Beneath the surface, though, there are at least two reasons to address it here: 1. Sources with knowledge of the discussions told ESPN.com that the Lakers did indeed engage the Nets earlier this month in some exploratory talks to see if Brooklyn had interest in such a swap. Sources say that the Nets balked at the idea when it was presented before Lopez's injury, but it's still noteworthy if it happened. ESPN.com

The Lakers were known to be, at the very least, calling around to gauge Gasol's value before they decided to pull Pau off the market earlier this month. So determining how serious the Lakers really were with their Lopez interest is tricky ... especially since Lopez's health misfortune extinguishes any realistic hope of Pau-for-Brook talks re-igniting between now and the Feb. 20 trade deadline. Yet the mere concept of Gasol and Lopez exchanging jerseys nonetheless gets you thinking, because Lopez is owed $32.5 million over the next two seasons after this one. ESPN.com

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