As moratorium ends, Nets near agreement on max contract for Brook Lopez

via Adrian Wojnarowski:

Restricted free-agent center Brook Lopez is progressing toward an agreement for a maximum contract with the Brooklyn Nets, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

Nets president Billy King and Lopez’s agent, Arn Tellem, are finalizing the length of the deal – four years for $58 million, or five years for $78 million – and ironing out protections on the back end to account for a right foot that Lopez broke twice in the past year, sources said.

King is scheduled to travel to Los Angeles on Wednesday to work on completing the deal with Tellem.

Brooklyn needs Lopez as the centerpiece of a sign-and-trade deal to acquire Orlando’s Dwight Howard, but is running out of time waiting for the Magic to make a decision on where they want to trade him, sources said. The Nets need to add four free agents into a deal for Howard, and convincing all of them to be a part of a complicated sign-and-trade deal much beyond Wednesday’s end to the league’s moratorium on transactions becomes increasingly more unrealistic every day.
Once Lopez signs the deal, he can’t be traded until December.

If the deal is the five-year maximum, it’s not a sign-and-trade, as sign-and-trade deals can only be up to four years.

If not signed as a sign-and-trade, Lopez can’t be traded until December 15th.

Oh, and that free agency moratorium? Ends in about three minutes. Bottoms up.