Brook Lopez: I'll bounce back

NEW YORK -- Brooklyn Nets center Brook Lopez, speaking to reporters for the first time since suffering a season-ending broken right foot injury Dec. 20 in Philadelphia, said Sunday night there's "no question" in his mind that he'll be able to rehab, recover and return to All-Star form.

Lopez, who was sporting crutches, added that he'll be ready for the first regular-season game of the 2014-15 season.

"It's not something I'm worried about," Lopez said when asked about his confidence in his foot next time he steps on the court. "I don't think I can go on the court and play basketball having any doubts in my mind. We've done everything we can and I can at this point to take care of it, and it's been taken care of."

Lopez underwent surgery Jan. 4 to repair the fractured fifth metatarsal of his right foot. He also had a second procedure, called a first metatarsal osteotomy, in which another bone was repositioned in his foot to unload and protect the injured area.

"They're trying to put more pressure on the inside of my foot ... essentially they lowered the arch on the inside of my foot so there should be more pressure on there," said Lopez, adding that he was operated on by arguably the best orthopedic surgeons in the country, if not, the world.

Lopez is interested to see how differently it is to walk for the first time.

"I'm gonna be falling on my face more than I do already, which is a lot," Lopez joked.

Lopez previously fractured the same fifth metatarsal in December 2011, and later had a screw replaced in it this past offseason.

Despite now having his right foot operated on several occasions, Lopez is not thinking about former centers like Yao Ming and Zydrunas Ilgauskas, whose careers were ended by foot injuries.

Having a first metatarsal osteotomy is said to be a career-saving procedure, and also, a last-ditch effort to allow a player to continue playing.

"I'm not scared at all," Lopez said. "I'm confident I'm going to get back on the floor and I'm going to do everything I can. There's no doubt in my mind that I'll be back out there playing with my guys. I'm going to do everything I can to be out there."

Lopez has had a tough time over the last month being out. He's been reading, writing and drawing, but not being able to help his team has obviously weighed on him.

"It's great to be back. It's my second game being back with the team, I've been at one practice as well," Lopez said. "It's just good to be around the guys and enjoy their camaraderie. I've been on bed rest for about just over a month now. It's been tough, I guess I was going through some cabin fever."

Lopez said he knew right after the 76ers game when they took the X-ray that his season was over.

"They didn't even have to tell me," he said. "I'd seen enough before to recognize that line on the X-ray."

Lopez said he's received a lot of encouragement from teammate Shaun Livingston, who suffered a gruesome knee injury back in 2007, but was able to recover through grueling rehab process.

Lopez hopes to lose his crutches in three weeks to a month. He says the most frustrating part is not being able to be in the weight room and doing rehabilitation exercises.

He is having custom shoes made.

The 25-year-old was averaging a team-high 20.7 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 17 games at the time of the injury.

Lopez is in the second year of a four-year, $60 million max contract he signed in the summer of 2012.