With a third DUI arrest for Ty Lawson, there’s a chance the Denver Nuggets stop trying to trade him. Instead, they’ll release the point guard who clearly has issues to deal with.
Lawson was only 20 when he was arrested in 2008 when playing for North Carolina. His alcohol levels were below the limit, but he was underage (only 20 at the time). He was arrested six months ago for DUI in Denver, and has now been picked up in Los Angeles for the same offense, which can even result in jail time.
The Nuggets drafted Emmanuel Mudiay in the first round of the 2015 draft, which to many people was a sign that they’re planning on trading Lawson, the starting point guard for the team over the last four and a half seasons. Now, it’s hard to see who takes him (the favorites to land him, the Sacramento Kings, signed Rajon Rondo) with his trade value hitting rock bottom.
Lawson is owed $25.6 million over the next two seasons. Good value for his production (15.2 points, 9.6 assists per game), but with these kind of problems? It’s hard to see the Nuggets managing to deal him, although it depends what the process of law will result in.
Releasing him and using the stretch provision creates a cap hit of $8.5 million over three seasons. Stings a bit, but not too terrible considering how high the salary cap is going to reach next year. The Nuggets, for now, are waiting to see what happens with Lawson before letting go of the team’s best player for quite some time.