It seems as if someone in Orlando is performing last minute voodoo on Brook Lopez in a wayward attempt to keep Dwight Howard in a Magic uniform. This season Lopez has played in just five games due to injury after first breaking his foot and then spraining his ankle after two games back which will keep him on the shelf passed the trade deadline.
A Dwight Howard to the Nets trade has been the talk of the NBA since the season began. Sure, there are reportedly 6-8 other teams chasing him, but it always seemed like Dwight was leaning towards joining Deron Williams in Jersey (which will soon become Brooklyn). Now with the apparent centerpiece of that trade injured, is New Jersey screwed? The truth is that this injury probably won't affect their chances of landing Howard at all.
Orlando is in a troublesome spot. Dwight can refuse to sign a contract extension to potential trade partners, scaring some teams off. The Lakers for example, once frontrunners, have heard rumors that Dwight wants to be "the man" on a team and therefore he would be reluctant to sign an extension to play behind Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol. This is slowly narrowing down the options to the point of New Jersey becoming a more likely destination, regardless if Lopez is hurt or not. It helps that the Nets can offer much more than just Brook Lopez. They could potentially give Orlando Lopez, promising rookie MarShon Brooks, a handful of draft picks, and expiring contracts to give Orlando salary cap relief. The Magic would give back Howard and either Hedo Turkoglu or Glen Davis who both have longer-term contracts. This trade may not net Disney World the most talent, but with Dwight limiting their possibilities, it might still be their best option.