Lopez Injury Hurts Nets On Two Fronts

HANG TIME NEW JERSEY BUREAU – The compressed NBA schedule has claimed another victim before the season even gets started, and the victim was one of the more durable players in the league.

The New Jersey Nets took one on the chin Wednesday when Brook Lopez suffered a stress fracture in his right foot in the first half of the team’s final preseason game. Lopez will have surgery to repair his fifth metatarsal on Friday.

The potential effects of Lopez’s injury are two-fold.

First, the Nets’ chances of making the playoffs are now pretty slim. If Lopez was healthy, I could see New Jersey fighting for the eighth spot in the East with Milwaukee and Atlanta, especially if the Nets were to add Andrei Kirilenko. But now, they have only Johan Petro and Shelden Williams to man the center spot, which spells trouble.

Second, the Nets obviously won’t be trading for Dwight Howard anytime soon because Lopez was the centerpiece of their offer to Orlando.

One of the biggest arguments for Lopez over the Lakers’ Andrew Bynum in the Howard sweepstakes was that Lopez hadn’t missed a game in his three-year career, while Bynum has averaged just 55 games in his six seasons. But it’s clear now that every 7-footer (not named Dwight) comes with a risk of injury.

The Nets believe Lopez should be able to return sometime in February, and the trading deadline isn’t until March 15. Besides, by using some of their cap space to sign Kris Humphries and DeShawn Stevenson (which hasn’t been formally announced yet) to one-year deals, the Nets were pretty much planning on not getting Howard until close to the deadline anyway.

So it’s likely that Lopez’s absence will hurt more in the short term.

Update: Nets acquire center Mehment Okur from Jazz for second-round pick in 2015.

16 Comments

  1. Paul says:

    I think Nets better refocus here if they want something done. D. Will is one of the best PG in the league. But without help, there is only so much he can do. I think Nets can pull my idea off. They should trade D. Will to OKC. Yes I said it. Westbrook is an athletic, scoring PG, I would say top five in explosive PG. He can the firework for Nets in a way since the guy loves to score and become the higlight reel. D. Will to OKC will probably guarantee OKC the NBA championship. But Nets need to care more about how to make their team exciting in case the don’t pull D. Howard in. Even with Westbrook, D. Howard can make a great duel. I think it’s a win win situation. it’s just both teams need to figure their numbers out.

  2. julymorning says:

    The trade between Howard for Bynum comes to life for reals! Howard got a clear choice now if he wants a ring and the Magic get a package to deal from the Lakers! There’s no better deal anywhere else !

  3. NBAfan2006-present says:

    I’d love for D. Howard to go 2 L.A too, but not with the cost of Bynum and Gasol just Bynum and someone else who may not be benefitiing the Lakers that much. like Ron Artest. I personally don’t believe D-Will and Dwight Howard would be enough to bring the Nets all the way to the Finals If those 2 were together then what’s the difference between them and the New York Knicks 2 star players no very productive bench and pretty much no depth

  4. JK says:

    Dwight is coming to BK he and Dwill both have said they want to start something on their own not and no other place then to Bring A title to Brooklyn….there is management and ownership that discusses in full detail of player moves with their stars theirs a GM proven he already put together a team that went to Back to Back Championships

    Big Market

    Top PG

    - Once Josh Smith Gets traded he will have no choice but to come to BK to play with his PG of choice and Best Friend

  5. notalahomer says:

    No one other than an LA fan would think that Dwight wouldn’t ruin his legacy by going there. Is he trying to be Shaq by giving the finger to Orlando and running to Kobe for a ‘ship? Why would he want to go to the Lakers anyway? All I see is a team in a spiral with an aging (and injured) superstar.

  6. prodlp says:

    Lakers are going nowhere this season(unless they get dwight). if we want to talk about brillaint moves let look at the lakers this off season. I dont think we even need to go in depth about it, Kobe said it himself. When the magic and lakers met in the finals in 2009 and up until now, the lakers only had one more successful season than the magic. The lakers always had more talent and that should have prolonged their success or “legacy” as the modern day dynasty potentially 3 peating. Instead like the magic they were eliminated early in the playoffs last season and they have no chance of being contenders again without a player of dwights magnitude, To be honest the magic are in the same predicament, if the magic would get kobe they would be contenders this season as well. So to argue that the lakers are in a better place than the magic this season is a bit ridiculous. The problem with La and their fans is that they are all egotistacal believing that every good player can only be good only if they becomea laker. I will be the first to admit that dwight will more than likely end up a laker but i think people need to realize that the lakers are a team were good players congregate because they can’t get it done anywhere else. The nba is full of primadona’s that have no loyalty or work ethic to push for their teams or organization into becoming a dynasty. When there is spilled milk its time to cry and run away and the first place they always go is the lakers. A pretentious team full of whiners(even kobe whines) who never were able to do it on their own.

  7. Tai Fennell says:

    Hmmm lets see…….Howard and Williams? Or Haward, Gasol, and Kobe Bryant?? Yeah ummm…I think I’ll go with option #2 on this one. Dwight Howard would do nothing but ENHANCE his legacy if he goes to the Lakers! JR: did you not see the 3-peat during the Kobe and Shaq era?? If Shaq stayed they would have won atleast 3 more. Sure Kobe isn’t as athletic as he used to be and plays a little more reserved but he has the will to win all the same, and still remains to be a top 5 player in the game today. Now you throw a player like Gasol in the mix to play right next to Dwight?? Rings galore…need I say more???

  8. Justin says:

    I hope Dwight does go to the Nets. He will be a great addition to the team. They seem to be on the right track and it could be a new place that Dwight could help. If Orlando isn’t careful, he’s just going to leave when the season is done. The Howard and Orlando days are done and I think the Brooklyn and Howard days are in all our futures.

  9. SSD LAKERS FAN says:

    WHY WOULD DWIGHT RUIN HIS LEGACY IN A LAKER UNIFORM… THE PURPLE AND GOLD IS WHERE LEGACIES ARE MADE BUDDDDDY

  10. D12LA says:

    Why would Dwight stay in orlando? he already requested a trade and wants a change. plus kobe, dwight and possibly Gasol will make a great team

  11. JR says:

    Dwight’s not going anywhere. Go to the Nets and work twice as hard and wait twice as long to MAYBE make the finals?? Go to Kobe’s team and destroy your legacy?? Or stay in Orlando where you already have half the formula solved, and the other half just requires tweaking? They’ve proven they can make the finals, but the problem is that Otis Smith simply made a few bad decisions the last two years. Either replace him or give him another chance to “tweak” the rest of the formula.

    • BIG A says:

      Unfortunately, I have to agree, JR. I’ve been a Nets fan for quite awhile now and honestly, I’m hoping that Dwight decides to move to Brooklyn. However…I believe he’s staying put. It’s not enough to have talent and play alongside other very talented players. You need the heart, the love for where you are. I don’t think he’ll feel the love or even be comfortable anywhere other than Orlando. I believe the trade talks are his blunt way of expressing his frustrations. A new GM and a new-look coaching staff (along with a few roster changes) are going to be the Magic’s ticket to a title. Wherever he decides to go, I support his decision. JUST KEEP OWNING THAT PAINT, BIG FELLA!!!

    • Cameron says:

      Destroy his legacy? I think not. More like take his legacy to the next level! Dwight’s going to LA, and this story strengthens that thought.

    • 21 says:

      Dream on. ‘Half the formular solved’? No way. With the current roster, no matter how much they twist and tweak, they have absolute no chance against Miami, New York, Chicago and Boston. Plus the teams morale (as well as Dwights morale) is at an all-time low. If Otis Smith doesn’t trade him as soon as possible they will a) have a very ugly all-star weekend like the Nuggets with Carmelo, they will possibly b) make a last-minute panic trade in which they get much worse players than they would get now or c) they’ll see Howard walking away without getting ANYTHING in return, like the Cavs saw it happen with LeBron. Or the Magic with Shaq a couple of years back.
      And how does Dwight destroy his legacy when he goes to the Lakers?
      Otis Smith and the Magic had six years to build a championship team around Howard, and the furthest they got were the Finals where they didn’t look too bright against the Lakers. They had their chances, they failed. It’s natural that a player wants out of town, especially now that you have teams in the conference that you simply don’t have a shot on.
      Just trade him already.

    • SuPeRgOuLaSh says:

      Jr,
      are you going to just ignore the fact that Dwight Howard doesn’t want to play for orlando anymore? His contract expires at the end of the year, and if the player vocalizes that he doesnt want to remain with the same team (like dwight did) then general management is going to be looking for a trade rather than just letting dwight go at the end of his contract.

    • ultimatebasketball7583 says:

      which half? The only half of formula solved is Dwight. They have terrible game plan, that doesn’t work when they need it to, dumb coach and GM. They’re giving huge contracts to players not deserving them to make it seem like they have star power. And it’s not like any quality players are heading to Orlando.