The general assumption when you see a seven-footer playing in the NBA is that he is a solid rebounder, but Brooklyn Nets center Brook Lopez has proven that’s not always the case. Over his five NBA seasons, Lopez has averaged just 7.4 rebounds per game, a criminally low number for someone of his size and caliber.
Part of the reason that Lopez’s rebounding numbers haven’t been great over his career is the fact that he’s not exactly quick with his feet. He has solid footwork offensively, but when it comes to making reactionary movements to attack the glass, he leaves a lot to be desired.
With the arrival of Kevin Garnett in Brooklyn coming into this season, though, there was a belief (or maybe a hope) that Lopez’s rebounding might improve this season because of the attention KG demands on the boards. With KG drawing bodies, that could theoretically open Lopez up for more rebounding opportunities.
If the Nets’ first game of the preseason is any indication, Garnett’s arrival has had no effect on Lopez’s ability on the glass. In Brooklyn’s preseason opener against the Washington Wizards, Lopez had no effect in the rebounding department. Sometimes when you say a player had no effect, it means they didn’t perform well, but still gave some sort of production; that’s not the case here, though. Lopez finished the game having played 12.5 minutes and didn’t register a single rebound.
Lopez’s ineffectiveness on the boards has affected the way he’s perceived. Based on his offensive abilities alone, the Nets center would be one of the best players at his position in the league. With his lack of rebounding, though, people view him as good, but not close to great either. Perhaps it’s a part of his game that, even if he always has a Garnett type of player around, isn’t going to get better. All I know is that zero rebounds, even in a preseason games, is a bit ridiculous.