Brook Lopez has a $16.7 million player option for next season, which he can choose to accept or he can decide to opt out and become a free agent this summer. That, for the 26-year-old, is going to be a tough choice. As we pointed out earlier, he can take the $16.7 million option and opt out next summer, when the new TV deal is going to kick in, which could net him a bigger pay day. That, though, would mean he would have to stay healthy beyond this season.
What to do, what to do.
For Nets coach Lionel Hollins, though, while this will be a decision that Lopez has to make himself, it's an easy decision as to whether or not Hollins wants him back on the team next season.
From Monday's practice:
Hollins on Brook Lopez/FA? "I just said I want him back. How many times do I have to say that? Damn. I want him back. ...But it's his call."— Stefan Bondy (@SBondyNYDN) March 30, 2015
Lionel Hollins on Brook Lopez's upcoming free agency: "I want him to be here. I want him to be here. I want him to be here." Over and over.— devin kharpertian (@uuords) March 30, 2015
Here's Devin Kharpertian on the exchange, in which Hollins turned to each reporter, individually, and let them know he wants Lopez back.
"I don’t worry about whether he’s going to be a free agent, whether he’s going to be back, or anything like that," Hollins said. "Obviously I’d like for him to be back. I hope he’s going to be back. But those decisions are not mine, and I don’t worry about it."
When pressed further about his role in the team’s decision-making process, Hollins grew exasperated. "I just said I want him back. How many damn times do I have to say that? Damn."
Stefan Bondy pointed out that while Hollins first noted the decision was up to Brook, he later in the conversation indicated it's also about what the Nets want to pay.
"(Lopez coming back next season) is out of my control. I can say I want him back all I want. If some team's offering him $25 million a year, and we say as an organization [that] they don't want to pay, then it's not my call. I have no control of that. No matter what I say. I'm down here (on the totem pole). There's somebody here (higher) and there's somebody here (even higher)."
A little inspirational music, perhaps, Mr. Hollins?
- Lionel Hollins on Brook Lopez: "I want him back. I want him back. I want him back" - Devin Kharpertian - The Brooklyn Game
- Hollins on Lopez's future: 'I want him back' - Mike Mazzeo - ESPN New York
- Lionel Hollins hopes Brook Lopez stays with Nets next season - Stefan Bondy - New York Daily News
- Brook Lopez named NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week - Colin Stephenson - Newsday
- Nets: Lionel Hollins wants Brook Lopez back - Andy Vasquez - The Record