Josh Newman, SNYNets.com
That optimism was tempered drastically on Tuesday morning when the team announced Lopez will not play against the Knicks, making it six straight games missed with the sprained right foot. The Nets are 1-4 without Lopez, including four straight losses.
Lopez, who missed all but five games last season with a broken right foot, had been deemed a game-time decision after he went full at practice, including 5-on-5, on Monday.
Nets General Manager Billy King said at shootaround that Lopez is not in good enough condition to play just yet. That is a problem as the Nets open a string of four games in five nights beginning Tuesday.
Nets head coach Avery Johnson took it a step further at his pregame media availability, saying Lopez would not be making the trip with the team to Toronto for Wednesday night’s game at the Raptors.
“He”s gonna come back 100 percent from what we’re told at some point, it’s just not now,” Johnson said. “He’s not gonna make the trip, he’s gonna stay back and get treated on tomorrow and then we’ll work him out on Thursday and see where we go from there and see how he recovers.”
Johnson continued, “We’ll see where we are for Friday, see where we are for Saturday and on and on. If really concerned is a 10, from what I see and what I’m told, I’m probably at a 2.”
If Lopez is not ready to go after Thursday, this could drag into next week. The Nets are home for the Detroit Pistons on Friday and at the Chicago Bulls on Saturday.
In the first meeting between the Knicks and Nets on Nov. 26, a 96-89 overtime win for the Nets at Barclays Center, Lopez scored 22 points and hauled in 11 rebounds while going toe-to-toe with reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year Tyson Chandler.
Josh Newman is SNYNets.com’s Field Reporter. Follow him on Twitter for up to the minute news and banter on all things related to the Brooklyn Nets and the NBA