As the Brooklyn Nets opened up their wallets this summer to hand over $60 million to Brook Lopez, some deemed the contract "laughable," while others thought giving that kind of money to a 24-year-old, 7-footer who can give you 20 points per game made sense.
Really, you could almost make a valid argument on either end, especially with Lopez coming off a "lost season" in which he played just five games for the Nets.
Now, however, there seems to be few detractors and more of a common consensus that a healthy Lopez is certainly earning his pay.
Brook Lopez's max deal was quite a good laugh in the summer. As it turns out, it may have been the best decision Brooklyn made in 2012. (Well, second behind introduction of the BrooklyKnight, of course.) Given Andrew Bynum's long injury return and Dwight's slow start, Lopez has been one of the league's three best centers this season in terms of impact, up there with Tyson Chandler and Joakim Noah.
There really is no question about it, as Nets fans know, this team is much, much better with Lopez on the court than they are with him off it. And if you want to talk about the importance of one single player on this Nets team, there's probably no argument to be made against Lopez being the team's MVP, 32 games into the season.
- Brook Lopez's max contract isn't so bad - Tom Ziller - SB Nation