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Lopez: "I Need To Be Aggressive"

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Brook Lopez's scoring numbers would lead you to believe the 22-year-old is progressing.  He's putting up 19.1 points per game after 18.8 last season when the Nets won all of 12 games.  But every other metric of a great center is down: his shooting sits at just 44.7%, down from nearly 50; his rebounding, in particular, has seen a drop, from 8.4 to a measly (at least for a center) 6.3, down almost two a game from his rookie season.

He knows what the issue is: he is playing further away from the basket and isn't as aggressive as he should be.  Although he suffered from a severe bout of mononucleosis in the summer and his coach has taken some of the blame, he says it's mostly him. 

"My bread and butter is definitely closer to the basket," Lopez told Alex Raskin. "I know it's where I'm at my best."  He also knows that this summer could be the time for his value to be assessed and contracted for.