With the Brooklyn Nets mired at the bottom of the NBA standings at 9-47 and in need of a full rebuild, the team may be inclined to sell off some of its veteran players to acquire draft picks or young players. As a result, center Brook Lopez is a prime candidate to be swapped before Thursday's 3 p.m. trade deadline.
Continue for updates.
Nets Reportedly Lower Asking Price for Lopez
Tuesday, Feb. 21
Marc Stein of ESPN reported the Nets would accept a first- and second-round pick for Lopez, having lowered the price from two first-round draft choices.
Pelicans Inquired About Lopez
Monday, Feb. 6
Nets Putting Lopez on the Trade Block
Monday, Jan. 30
Brooklyn is willing to trade Lopez, according to Keith Smith of RealGM:
Keith Smith @KeithSmithNBA
While BRK has no incentive to tank, they view traded picks as a sunk cost and want to recoup value from current roster as much as possible.2017-1-30 16:43:13
Lopez Deal Could Help Jump-Start Nets' Rebuild
The Nets are likely to ask for a significant return in any deal involving Lopez. In early January, Stein reported the Nets were asking for two first-round picks for their star center. Given that the Boston Celtics can swap first-rounders with the Nets this year and own Brooklyn's first-rounder next year, it's hardly surprising the team is looking to recoup draft assets.
Whether a team will give up that type of return, however, is harder to say.
Lopez, 28, offers a mixed bag. He has been one of the few bright spots for the struggling Nets this season, averaging 20.8 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game.
His game has also evolved in this season, extending to beyond the three-point line. He is now shooting 34.4 percent from beyond the arc, joining the growing group of centers who have three-point range, which includes Marc Gasol (38.5), Joel Embiid (36.7) and DeMarcus Cousins (35.6).
But Lopez has never been a great rebounder and isn't an elite rim protector (7.2 rebounds per game for his career), though he isn't a liability defensively, either.
For a playoff team in need of a solid scorer who can stretch the floor with his perimeter shooting, Lopez will be an intriguing option. But a number of teams have logjams at the position and could flood the market with potential trade pieces.
The Philadelphia 76ers, for one, have Nerlens Noel and Jahlil Okafor behind Embiid—an untenable situation at center that they should resolve before the trade deadline. Meanwhile, the Orlando Magic could move Nikola Vucevic, given their glut of big men.
In other words, it's a buyer's market when it comes to centers. If the Nets are serious about moving Lopez, they may have to accept less than traditional market value.