The Denver Nuggets quickly parted ways with embattled point guard Ty Lawson this summer, following his second DUI arrest this year. Even before that, folks around the organization had suspected Lawson had been dealing with alcohol problems for several years.
He recently completed a court-mandated alcohol rehabilitation program after his most recent arrest, an encouraging step toward resurrecting his once promising career. His next challenge is proving he can be a productive member of the Houston Rockets’ backcourt. James Harden – who has been the de facto point guard since Patrick Beverley’s injury – stands to benefit the most by the decreased workload.
Following a recent meeting with Lawson, Harden seems confident that Lawson is ready to move past his recent issues and focus on basketball. Via Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:
“Ty is definitely going to help us,” Harden said during a break in the Kroger Unplug and Play James Harden Basketball ProCamp in The Woodlands on Saturday. “He gives us that quickness, that speed, playmaking ability, something that we were missing, especially deep in the playoffs. We’re going to welcome him with open arms. We’re happy to have him.”
Even if Lawson is effectively able to manage his past issues, there’s no guarantee their on-court chemistry won’t be volatile. He and Harden are both ball-dominant guards, so there’s definitely going to be an adjustment period for them to learn how to play off of each other. This is complicated by the fact the Rockets just inked Beverley – who is the team’s best perimeter defender – to a four-year, $25 million deal.
There are a lot of variables involved, but it’s still a great opportunity for both Lawson and the Rockets to take the next step.
(via Houston Chronicle)