Brook Lopez out until after the trade deadline

The Nets announced today that Brook Lopez sustained a sprained left ankle in yesterday’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats. He’ll be put in a walking boot and is expected to miss three weeks of action.

Lopez’s return ranged from uninspiring (his first two games) to awe-inspiring (his 38- and 28-point explosions against Dallas and Boston, respectively), before injuring his ankle in the third quarter last night against the Bobcats.

Lopez is out until at least March 23rd — eight days after the NBA’s trade deadline, making any potential trade for Dwight Howard that much more difficult to complete. Looks like the general consensus — that the Nets are willing to take their chances in free agency — would have to become the reality if the Nets want any shot at Howard.

If anything else, this is just another awful setback in a freakishly unlucky year for Lopez, who played in 246 consecutive games in his first three seasons before his foot and ankle injuries this year.

Just to recap:

Damion James: broken foot — out for season
Shawne Williams: broken foot — out for season
Keith Bogans: torn ligament, fractured ankle — out for season, waived
Brook Lopez: broken foot, sprained ankle — played five games

On a potentially related note, here’s some reading on how to break curses.