Ty Lawson, the 27-year old point guard for the Denver Nuggets who has been arrested twice in 2015 for DUI, has been traded to the Houston Rockets. Lawson entered rehab for alcohol Saturday.
Lawson was a 1st round pick in 2009 after starring at North Carolina, and quickly became one of the better young point guards in the NBA. He averaged 17.6 ppg in the 2013-2014 season and was among the leader leaders in assists last season (9.6).
But off-the-court he was a mess this season for whatever reason, and after a DUI in January as the Nuggets hurtled toward one of the worst records in the NBA, Lawson thought he was getting traded last month during the NBA draft. He had hoped to reunite with George Karl in Sacramento.
That trade never happened. And Denver drafted point guard Emmanuel Mudiay.
Three weeks later, Lawson was popped for DUI again. In 2013, there was a domestic violence allegation. And now he’s off to Houston, where the Rockets hope to have bought a talented player low. They gave up a bunch of players who weren’t going to be a factor this season.
Denver, which is rebuilding, acquired Kostas Papanikolaou, Pablo Prigioni, Joey Dorsey, former 1st round pick Nick Johnson and a protected future 1st round pick.
Houston, which lost to Golden State in the Western Conference Finals, got there without starting point guard Patrick Beverley, a tenacious defender. When the Rockets go small – Dwight Howard at center, surrounded by Trevor Ariza, James Harden, Beverley and Lawson, they’ll be very dangerous offensively.