The Nets acquired their opening night center Wednesday.

It just wasn't Dwight Howard.

After months of speculation surrounding Brook Lopez's future, the 7-foot center signed a four-year, $61 million contract to remain with the team yesterday.

"Brook Lopez is one of the top young centers in the NBA," Nets general manager Billy King said in a statement. "We have witnessed his growth as a player over the past four years, and are very pleased that he will remain in a Nets uniform as we begin our new era in Brooklyn."

The move officially puts the Nets out of the running to acquire Howard until Jan. 15, and brings back the team's longest-tenured player in Lopez. The 24-year-old has career averages of 17.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in 251 career games since he was selected by the Nets with the 10th overall pick in the 2008 draft.