To say this season has been tough for the Nets is a huge understatement. Standing at 14-56, there's nothing to smile at unless you're thinking about the future. Their top five pick this summer belongs to the Celtics, so that's not encouraging. However, they do have young, rising pieces in Caris LaVert, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, and Sean Kilpatrick.
The Nets also have solid veterans in Jeremy Lin and Trevor Booker. However, every team needs a star. Or a go-to guy. For the Nets, that guy is Brook Lopez. Now, using the term "star" loosely, Lopez is still a great center. In fact, he's undoubtedly one of the best offensive big men in the game. Injuries haven't been a concern for him as of late either, so overall, he's something the Nets should be thankful for.
Still, trade rumors will always swirl around him. Just this past Trade Deadline, the Nets were looking to ship him for a high first rounder. They obviously didn't get it, but that shouldn't disappoint them. Lopez is playing very well this season, averaging 20.8 points, 5.2 boards, and 1.7 blocks per game. He's never been a great rebounder, but he delivers in other ways. Having a center who can post up, and shoot the three ball efficiently is vital in today's NBA. Lopez has also become a leader for the Nets. Considering how long he's been with the team, he deserves that position in leadership.
However, will he fit for the Nets future? Well, he's not old. Currently 28 years old, coming up 29 on April 1, he's still got a few strong years left in him. Rebuilding teams like the Nets must build a culture before anything else. So veterans like Brook Lopez can help the Nets in those times in need.
Also, Lopez is a player who has no problem taking the offense into his own hands. The Nets have some promising players, but not one of them could take the steering wheel in scoring. At least, not yet. So Lopez gives the Nets a scoring boost when they need it the most. Like mentioned before, every team needs a go-to guy, so why can't it be him?
Since the off-season will come early for the Nets, they will have plenty of time to think about their options. Lopez himself probably knows him being traded is always a likely possibility. However, he generously wants to be there. It's his home. Makes sense, since it was the team that drafted him back in 2008.
Time will tell on what happens with him, but the Nets should truly wonder if Lopez is a piece on the move or a piece for the future.