New Jersey Nets general manager Billy King said he plans to take center Brook Lopez over to Brooklyn to visit the team’s future home next week.
“He’s good,” King said of Lopez, who underwent surgery to remove a bone mass and calcium deposits from his upper right arm on Wednesday. “We were here [at the PNY Center, the Nets' practice facility] yesterday. He stopped by to get his bandages changed. He spent about and hour visiting and we’re gonna try to get him over to Brooklyn to have lunch and visit the site.”
King said Lopez is expected to make a full recovery in six weeks and be ready to resume basketball activity. The 23-year-old averaged 20.4 points and six rebounds per game.
New Jersey Nets
King took point guard Deron Williams to visit the site on Apr. 27.
“For me and for him both, it was great to get there for the first time,” King said.
"It's cool to see the beams up," Williams told the Nets official website. "You hear about how it's going to look and how it's going to be finished. But it's good to come and see how the progress is. You can kind of start picturing it, what it's going to be like, see the layout of things. And it's good to see the area – I hadn't been to this area yet. It's different. This is in the heart of the city. It's kind of like the Garden. It's the same feel. It's special."
Williams has said during the offseason he’d like to get a long-term extension done before the start of the 2011-12 regular season, as to avoid constant questioning about his future. But with an NBA lockout looming, and a new collective bargaining agreement yet to be in place, that, at least for now, appears unlikely.
King was at the PNY Center on Saturday afternoon to watch potential NBA draft picks work out in the inaugural 2011 New Jersey NBA Draft Combine. Twenty-two prospects worked out on Saturday, and 22 more are expected to showcase their talents in front of 27 teams on Sunday.
“Overall they did really well,” King said. “I think it was good to see the guys run some pick and rolls, and see how they defended.”
Potential draft picks have until Sunday at midnight to keep their names in the draft or return to school.
“I think if they’re smart and their college coaches are talking to them, I think they’ll have enough information,” King said. “It’s good to get in front of every team.”
King, which team owns the No. 27 and No. 36 picks in the draft, wouldn’t show his hand as to which prospects excelled.
“I don’t want to zero in and say which guys did well,” King said. “I don’t want to tip my hand.”
Still, King said the additional draft combine was a success.
“It’s great that we were able to have this and have guys compete in a 5-on-5 setting,” King said. “Portsmouth is the first step, this is the second.”