Brook Swells to a Raging Torrent

Brook Lopez’s Rookie of the Month award was well deserved; he averaged nearly 15 points and 8 rebounds for the month. What may have gone unnoticed, however, is how he has further picked up his game since Yi Jianlian was injured back on January 9. During the twelve games that the Nets have played with Yi out, Lopez has:

--Played an average of 34 minutes per game
--Averaged 17.9 PPG
--Shot 55% from the floor, on an average of 13.3 attempts
--Converted 90.4% of his free throws (averaging 3.4 attempts per game)
--Grabbed an average of 8.0 rebounds per game, 2.8 on the offensive end
--Blocked an average of 1.7 shots

The negative stats aren't too shabby, either:
--Committed 2.3 turnovers
--Committed 2.7 fouls

To put this in perspective, we took a look at how many post players around the league have produced similar or better numbers over the course of the entire season. Setting the threshold slightly below Brook's numbers at 16.0 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 50% shooting, and 1.5 blocks, we come up with:

Dwight Howard
Yao Ming
Tim Duncan

That’s it.

Really. Furthermore, Howard and Yao have each committed more turnovers and personal fouls on a per-game basis.

Amare Stoudemire, Pau Gasol, Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Garnett, Chris Bosh, David West, Al Jefferson, and LaMarcus Aldridge come close, but all fail to make the cut either because their FG% or block shot average is slightly too low. Of course, many of these are power forwards, not centers, but we won't bother with such nuances.

Incidentally, of all these players mentioned, only Dirk has a FT% over 90%.

Do you get the feeling we may have something special here?

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