It’s been widely reported that the Bulls are open to re-signing Lopez and Lopez told me before a road game in Orlando that he’s open to re-signing. That said, I do think it’s more likely that Lopez is gone. He wants, and deserves, to play. And if healthy, Markkanen and Carter are going to play a lot. Yes, you need at least a three- and possibly four-man rotation for the power forward and center. However, Boylen also has talked about trying Markkanen at center and Porter at power forward in some smaller lineups. … So if it’s not Lopez, look for similarly-minded veterans to be added in free agency.
Players, coaches and management all have insisted on how important center Robin Lopez has been to the rebuild, so much so that the Bulls didn’t want to buy him out the last month for the stretch run. With Lopez facing free agency this summer, and staring at a backup role with the Bulls if he does return, what are the chances that the mutual admiration brings him back? “Robin has been terrific for us,’’ Paxson said. “We’ll keep an open mind on that, absolutely.’’
And even when Wendell Carter Jr. returns, it likely will be half time at power forward given he’s only about 6-10. It seems now Robin’s return for next season will be under consideration, which it wasn’t last summer.
What Boylen didn’t hesitate to say, however, was he would be all in on Lopez returning to the Bulls to see this rebuild through. “It’s his decision, but any program, including us, would be grateful for him,’’ Boylen said, when asked if he would make the case to general manager Gar Forman to pursue bringing Lopez back. “If he wants to be a part of what we’re doing that would be great. Obviously the business side of it is the business side of it, but Bulls across his chest means something. Even through all the trade rumors, all the junk that goes on before the deadline, he has a winning attitude and a great spirit.’’
“First of all, he brings a maturity and a work ethic,’’ Boylen said. “Practice is very important to him. His practice reps are very important to him. He fights for those, which I love when guys do that. He’s punctual, which is big for me. He cares about his craft. He’s an example to our young guys. He speaks up for the protection of the essence of the team, which I love and we need. Besides what he does on the floor, in the pocket and on the boards. His communication and his selflessness, those are great too. But he’s a team guy, he’s a winning player, and I’m just thankful he’s here.’’
Free-agent center Robin Lopez has agreed in principle to a four-year, $54 million contract with the New York Knicks, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Adrian Wojnarowski: The Knicks are finalizing a four-year, $54 million agreement with free agent center Robin Lopez, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.
New York met with Robin Lopez on Wednesday night in Los Angeles and one source said after the meeting that there was mutual interest between the Knicks and the free-agent big man.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Free agent center Robin Lopez discussing deal with Knicks that would earn him in range of $12M-$13M per season, league sources tell Yahoo.
The Knicks have $19 million to spend and still have their eyes on a big man. They met with Robin Lopez on Wednesday night and, according to a source with knowledge of the talks, Lopez came away with a positive impression of New York. “Interest is mutual, that’s for sure,” a source said.
David Aldridge: Bucks, who wanted an audience with Tyson Chandler, just completed meeting with free agent center Robin Lopez, per source.
Ian Begley: #Knicks have planned to meet with FA center Robin Lopez in Los Angeles while in town to meet with LaMarcus Aldridge, league sources say.
January 18, 2021 | 8:03 pm EST Update
January 18, 2021 | 7:42 pm EST Update
Jarrett Allen was en route to Madison Square Garden to face the Knicks when Nets general manager Sean Marks called. As he looked down at his phone, Allen knew what was happening. His time in Brooklyn was over. “It was definitely rough on me,” Allen said. “Even though you say it’s the business of basketball, it never makes it easier. But at the end of the day, it’s the business, and you have to move on.”