Nets' Brook Lopez undergoes ankle surgery while sidelined following foot surgery
The Nets announced Friday that Brook Lopez underwent surgery on March 3 to repair a torn tendon and tighten the lateral ligaments in his left ankle. The 2013 All-Star center was already sidelined after undergoing two procedures on his right foot back in January.
Brooklyn GM Billy King noted in a press release that Lopez suffered two ankle sprains -- one in mid-November and the other in mid-December -- that caused him to miss a total of nine games this season. The ankle surgery is not expected to delay Lopez's timeline for resuming basketball activities, which is currently set for June.
During a Dec. 20 loss to the Sixers, Lopez broke the fifth metatarsal in his right foot, an injury that required season-ending surgery to repair. The 2008 lottery pick also underwent a first metatarsal osteotomy at that time to "unload and protect the injured area" and help his right foot bear weight more evenly.
The sixth-year center previously missed all but five games of the 2011-12 season after breaking the same bone in his right foot twice in quick succession. Back in June 2013, Lopez underwent an additional surgery to address a screw that became bent after being implanted in his right foot during an earlier procedure.
Brooklyn is 28-21 following Lopez's season-ending foot injury and currently sits in the East's No. 5 seed. Nets forward/center Kevin Garnett has been sidelined since Feb. 27 with back spasms but will return to the court soon, according to the New York Post. Brooklyn coach Jason Kidd has coped with the absences of Lopez and Garnett by turning to rookie Mason Plumlee, Andray Blatche and Jason Collins in the middle. Lopez, 25, averaged 20.7 points, six rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 17 games for Brooklyn this season, and he ranked No. 7 in the NBA in Player Efficiency Rating at the time of his injury. The Stanford product is in the second year of a four-year, $60.8 million rookie extension. He will make $14.7 million this season, $15.7 million next season and $16.7 million in 2015-16.