Report: Nets’ deal with Thunder for Brook Lopez falls apart
The Brooklyn Nets have backed out of a potential deal to send center Brook Lopez to the Oklahoma City Thunder, Yahoo Sports/FOX Sports 1 NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski reports.
Wojnarowski cites league sources saying the two teams have been talking about a deal centered on Lopez for weeks before the Nets backed away Friday afternoon.
The original deal was a three-team trade involving the Charlotte Hornets that would have landed Lance Stephenson with the Nets and Lopez with the Thunder. However, the Nets balked at adding Stephenson and cut the Hornets out of negotiations to focus on dealing directly with the Thunder.
The two-team deal with the Thunder would have brought the expiring contract of Kendrick Perkins, young wing Jeremy Lamb and at least one other player to the Nets. Wojnarowski reports that the Nets were seeking a third team to get involved and absorb Perkins’ contract, but were unable to find one.
The talks between the two teams have been tabled for now, but are not necessarily permanently dead. Several reports have made it clear the Nets plan to move Lopez soon, and the Thunder has been the team most active in pursuing him.
Lopez is one of three players — along with Joe Johnson and Deron Williams — on the Nets’ roster making more than $15 million this season. Lopez also has a player option for next season, worth $16.7 million, that he is almost guaranteed to exercise because of his recent struggles with injury.
The Nets, who had to pay a record $90.57 million in luxury tax alone last season, are trying to shed as much salary as possible to begin rebuilding. Wojnarowski also reports they have been active in seeking deals for Williams, but so far have not had any significant interest.