TUESDAY, 7:24am: The Nets haven’t had any recent talks with Oklahoma City, as Robert Windrem of NetsDaily hears (Twitter link), adding that Brooklyn has no interest in Stephenson at this point. The Nets aren’t close to any deals, and there’s nothing that’s come up in discussion that makes any sense for Brooklyn, sources tell Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops (Twitter link).
MONDAY, 2:25pm: The Nets are being aggressive in their attempts to trade Brook Lopez in advance of Thursday’s 2pm Central deadline, as Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports writes amid his weekly power rankings. However, a source tells Sean Deveney of The Sporting News that there hasn’t been much movement on the Lopez front, with Nets GM Billy King giving other teams the feeling that he’s OK with keeping Lopez and building around him. Oklahoma City would like to pick up its talks with Brooklyn about Lopez, even though the Thunder aren’t willing to overpay for him, Deveney writes. Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio hears the Nets and Thunder are working toward a Lopez deal, though it’s unclear how close the sides are to any sort of agreement. Amico intimates that the Nets would like to receive Steven Adams, but Oklahoma City is making him off-limits for any trade, according to Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders.
The Nets and Thunder were the most active teams as trade chatter mounted around the league Sunday night, and they may end up doing a deal with each other, as Kennedy reported earlier. Grantland’s Zach Lowe also wrote that the Nets are active, but he said Brooklyn won’t make any deal just for the sake of doing so and wants flexibility and assets it can use for the future. A proposal that would have sent Lopez to the Thunder last month would largely have been a salary dump, with Kendrick Perkins and Jeremy Lamb among the pieces that would have headed Brooklyn’s way. There was also a three-team idea involving the Hornets that would have sent Lance Stephenson to the Nets and Lopez to Oklahoma City, but the Nets decided against that one. The Hornets would have liked to have acquired Lopez for themselves, but the Nets preferred to send him to the Western Conference, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported last month. The Nuggets, Heat, Lakers, Rockets all reportedly had some level of interest in Lopez as of earlier this season.
The Nets signaled to other teams a month ago that they wanted to make a Lopez deal within a few days, but they decided instead to keep him amid unappealing offers, as Wojnarowski wrote at the time. Brooklyn officials departed the talks amid their desire to build more consensus within the organization before moving ahead with any trade, according to Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPNNewYork.com, so that might explain today’s divergent narratives. Lopez is making more than $15.719MM this season, and there have been conflicting reports about the likelihood that he’ll pick up next season’s player option, worth in excess of $16.744MM. Chris Crouse of Hoops Rumors took a look earlier at the trade candidacy of the former All-Star who has started only 22 of 42 games for the Nets this year.