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Nets Avery Johnson, Brook Lopez having some issues

New Jersey Nets v Atlanta Hawks

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 07: Brook Lopez #11 of the New Jersey Nets reacts after being called for a foul against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on December 7, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

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A couple of days ago, when asked if he dreamed of coaching someone like Carmelo Anthony, Nets coach Avery Johnson had a snappy comeback:

“No. I dream of our center getting 10 rebounds.”

Wednesday night, in the fourth quarter of a close battle with the Phoenix Suns, the Nets ran few plays for Lopez even though he was guarded by the smaller Channing Frye. Then with three minutes to go and the game still very much undecided, Johnson benched Lopez.

Which led Lopez to say some things on the bench that, well… watch the video yourself (via Deadspin) but we’re pretty sure Mama Lopez didn’t teach him those words. (It was Robin, he’s a bad influence.)

Whatever dramatic shakeups the Nets front office is planning, Lopez and Johnson are part of the future of the franchise. Together. Coach and star center. Maybe roles need to be more clearly defined, maybe Lopez works best as a second or third option, but whatever the case these two need to get on the same page. Or it won’t matter who they bring in to play along side them.