Nets say Brook Lopez had ankle surgery three weeks ago

Brook Lopez takes a shot during a game

Brook Lopez takes a shot during a game against the Philadelphia 76ers on Dec. 20, 2013 in Philadelphia. (Credit: AP / Matt Slocum)

Brook Lopez is getting way too familiar with this surgery thing.

The Nets announced before Friday night's game against the Celtics that their injured center had surgery on his left ankle March 3 to repair a torn tendon and tighten the lateral ligaments. The procedure came a little more than two months after Lopez underwent season-ending surgery to repair the fifth metatarsal in his right foot, though general manager Billy King said it's something the team knew about when Lopez was examined after spraining his ankle twice in a month early in the season.

King said there's no change in Lopez's recovery timetable and anticipates that Lopez will begin basketball activities in June. King said Lopez will shed the walking boot on his right foot in about a week and a half. He'll wear a removable cast on his left for the next 31/2 weeks.

It was the first procedure on Lopez's left foot and his fourth foot surgery since December 2011, but King is confident that Lopez, who is in the second season of a four-year, $60-million contract, isn't damaged goods.

"I go back to a guy that's just had his jersey retired -- [Zydrunas] Ilgauskas," King said. "People kept saying, 'Ah, this guy, will he ever be able to play?' And he ends up with his jersey retired in Cleveland. So I think talking to the doctor, this time they've got it right."Livingston tops on radar

Shaun Livingston has shown he's all the way back from that gruesome 2007 left knee injury that derailed his career, and he's likely going to command good money on the open market once he becomes a free agent. King said re-signing Livingston is at the forefront of his offseason to-do list.

"Come July 1 or when I can meet with him and his agent and try to keep him here, he's priority No. 1 because he's been pretty successful for us and helped us win games," King said. " . . . I think the market will set itself and I think he's got to make a decision on what's best for him. Do you take a million more to go play and lose? So that's where I think players make those decisions."

Said Livingston, "It feels good to be wanted, but . . . I just want to help my team win games and just keep getting better on the court each game.''Net-cetera

King on if there's any chance owner Mikhail Prok- horov will face sanctions, given what's happening between the United States and Russia: "I'll leave that to [President] Obama and [Vladimir] Putin to figure out. I follow politics, a lot of politics. But I don't know anything about who we are putting sanctions on or who we are not. I know they did some guys today and then Putin did some guys. I think [Sen. John] McCain can't go to Russia, right?''

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