NBA Rumors: One Team "A Real Threat" To Steal UFA Brook Lopez From Bucks

The Milwaukee Bucks are hoping to essentially run it back, with new head coach Adrian Griffin providing a fresh voice for the 2021 NBA Champs. But the team is facing a couple of huge free agent issues this summer. 

Khris Middleton has opted out to reach the open market, and center Brook Lopez, a finalist for NBA Defensive Player of the Year this past season, is also out there up for grabs. 

NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski has labeled the Houston Rockets, with their league-high $60M in cap space, as a "real threat" to swoop in and steal Lopez from the Bucks.

"There's an expectation that the Houston Rockets, flush with a lot of salary cap space, are going to be a real threat for Lopez."

As Woj notes, the Bucks are still in "win now" mode with Giannis Antetokounmpo in his prime, and defensive dynamo Jrue Holiday still in the middle of his 4-year, $135M contract. 

The Rockets are committed to adding star veteran talent this summer, and several other free agents have also been on their radar, including of course James Harden, Dillon Brooks, Bruce Brown and others. That $60M can only go so far, but there's no doubt this is a team that is scaring some front offices around the league. 

Two other potential suitors include:

Detroit Pistons

This is another team with big money to spend, and are in need of the type of size and defensive presence in the middle Lopez can offer. The Pistons were 28th in the NBA in points allowed in the paint. 

Milwaukee Bucks

Both sides really do want to continue this relationship, it'll just take some financial gymnastics from Milwaukee to make it work. Lopez is a fan favorite there, he's close with Giannis, and it would be a huge blow to the Bucks' championship hopes if they let Lopez walk.

Photo: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports