In the neverending saga of Dwight Howard to the Nets, yesterday’s news came in the form of Brooklyn reportedly pulling out of trade talks.
ESPN and Yahoo! Sports both reported the Nets have pulled out of their pursuit for the All-Star center permanently and have signed Brook Lopez to a four-year, $61-million contract. Lopez, a restricted free agent, would have been the key component to any trade between the Magic and Nets.
Talks between the two sides have been off and on for at least six months, with the NBA?trade deadline coming and going without a resolution. Howard decided to opt in to the final year of his contract, ending any chance the center would sign with Brooklyn in the offseason.
But after a tumultuous end to the season, including the firing of head coach?Stan Van Gundy, Howard demanded a trade again, with Brooklyn being the desired location.
The Nets put a deal with Lopez, MarShon Brooks, Johan Petro and three first-round picks on the table, but after two weeks the Magic were still unsatisfied and the Nets decided to end talks yesterday once and for all.
The Magic are still reportedly entertaining trade offers from the Rockets and Lakers, who would likely include young center Andrew Bynum in any deal.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports.