Report: Rockets acquire Ty Lawson from Denver

VIDEO: The Starters discuss Ty Lawson trade from Denver to Houston.

LAS VEGAS — The Houston Rockets are trying to keep up in the Western Conference arms race, trading for Denver Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson, according to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski

The Denver Nuggets have reached agreement to trade guard Ty Lawson to the Houston Rockets, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Houston will send Kostas Papanikolaou, Pablo Prigioni, Joey Dorsey, Nick Johnson and a protected first-round draft pick to Denver, sources said. Along with Lawson, the Nuggets will send a future second-round pick to Houston.

Lawson, 27, entered treatment for alcohol abuse last week after he was arrested on DUI charges for the second time in six months.

If Lawson can resolve his off-court issues, he’s an obvious upgrade at point guard, with Patrick Beverley likely moving back to the bench after two seasons as the starter. Lawson also relieves James Harden of some of the ball-handling and play-making duties. And he will certainly help the Rockets play with pace.

The deal puts the Rockets right at the luxury tax line with 12 guaranteed contracts on their roster (once they sign first round pick Sam Dekker. But they were in the conference finals less than two months ago, could be healthier this season, and just upgraded their weakest position.

Lawson’s departure allows No. 7 pick Emmanuel Mudiay to run the show in Denver, with the re-signed Jameer Nelson as his veteran back-up and mentor.


  1. harriethehawk says:

    I think both Denver and Houston both win because they both unload what each of them considers to be garbage. Now the question is, can Ty Lawson be anther teams treasure?

  2. NBAFan says:

    Beverly is the perfect match for Harden in the back court, he covers those holes on defense, they will have to sacrifice that for Lawson’s ball handling and running the offense abilities. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out, how Harden adapts to being off ball again and how much the lack of guard defense will effect them with Beverly on the bench.

  3. taekayo says:

    Losing Smith has opened the door for an improving McDaniels, so it was a good move. Given his personal struggles, getting TY is still an upgrade in exchange for basically nothing. But I’d rather see him as a sixth man. Beverly sets the defensive tone for the Rockets (which Harden has none of, and Howard has seem to have forgotten). Harden could still keep up with his numbers given Beverly starts, and they would have that offensive punch with Ty coming off the bench. Might also help to have another threat other than Harden in crucial moments.

    The Rockets has definitely improved this year. But going against the Dubs, Griz, Clips and the Spurs would be a tough mountain to climb.

  4. AXINOSITA says:

    who cares!!!eventhough they have smith or lawson or whoever goes to houston they will not win a championship!!!!

  5. With the Rockets losing in the Western Conference Finals and almost losing in the Semi Finals to the Clippers, the one Glaring Need they had was for a Legitimate Point Guard! Darryl is a Genius for Robbing, I mean pulling off this trade for Ty Lawson! The offense wont slow down and be stagnant. You finally have a floor General that has the ability to make you forget the opposing teams point guard because now we have one… We haven’t had a legitimate point guard since Steve Francis…. Its a Great day for Houston fans if Ty can get sober and focused… Alley Oops on the House! But that’s just me…

    • Rastamis says:

      Yup, an alcoholic with 4 DUI’s to his name, an admitted dope smoker, misses team practices to be in Vegas… Yup, “Steal” of the century there. Houston, 3rd best team in Texas looking very desperate.

      • Daniel says:

        You think the Mavs are finishing ahead of the Rockets this season (or anytime soon)!?!?
        You either somehow missed the news that DeAndre Jordan reneged on his deal, or are totally delusional about the fact that Dallas won’t sniff the playoffs this season!

  6. johnny dawson says:

    Jameer Nelson at backup is quite a luxury.

  7. JBR says:

    And to think, just yesterday the Nuggets were ‘100% committed to Lawson during this tough time’. A day later he’s been traded for a handful of magic beans.

  8. Nate says:

    He knew he was going to get traded after muddily got drafted….he thought he was going to sacramento but nope…houston now has a problem if this kid doesn’t fix his act off the court. The solution to his problems can be solved and it doesn’t involved basketball at all. Interesting pick for houston if it works out….I didn’t like seeing Papanikolaou go…I liked him in HOU….I did cheered to see Prigioni gone, he needs to retire.

  9. Rocketman says:

    Rockets get a really good point guard for nearly nothing. Perhaps a fresh start with a contender will make the difference for Lawson .
    This is his last chance if any team can turn him around it will be Houston. Everybody seems to write the Rockets off as 5th or 6th I don’t think so. A healthy Rockets team is right up with The Warriors and Spurs. I think Beverly and Lawson gives them depth at the point guard position .I would sign Terry again I still see Rockets making 1 more move they could use a back up for Howard Rim protector. Stay tuned for as the West turns its going to be one hell of a ride too!

  10. Badasi12b says:

    “Lawson also relieves James Harden of some of the ball-handling and play-making duties” LOL “RELIEVES”?!?! That’s not relief, James Harden is a ball hog by CHOICE! It’ll be interesting to see HOW he functions without always having the ball in his hand! He might not like it. LOL

  11. BallerAce says:

    This is an interesting pickup; Lawson is obviously an upgrade at point guard, but how much James Harden will handle the ball now will be the thing to watch. I figure Lawson will continue to average close to 15 ppg/4.5-6 apg, but I want to see if Harden will continue to be able to keep up his productivity. And of course, he’s slowly been improving on defence so that’s always a factor. Morey is a genius though, they pretty much sacrificed nothing to get Lawson and with very little risk. The pecking order in the West (from the way I see it atleast) is Spurs, Warriors, Thunder, Clippers, Grizzlies/Rockets. Should be good..

  12. Nikos1983 says:

    I think that Nuggets just emptied some extra space on their salary cap.
    2 out of 4 are reported to leave, Papanikolaou has a big contract ($5m) and he is the third option as SF, yet his contract is not guaranteed so I believe he will depart as well.
    Johnson on the other hand has a contract about $1m so it will not put a huge burden on their salary cap.

    Houston got a good PG but I don’t know if he’ll be able to help them.
    Low risk-high possible return though as they traded 4 players with minor role for a possibly starting PG.

  13. G'dEagle says:

    This looks like a good move for both teams as Denver is getting 3 talented young players who can help with Pops being a big talent and Nick Johnson has talent too. Dorsey is the least likely to make a difference for Denver though he could still help out a little. Houston adds what they are looking for but taking the ball out of Harden’s hands is not necessarily what they really intend to do. But Lawson should fit int regardless with his quickness and penetration but as an off the ball shooter he does not fit as well as others would. Will be interesting to see where a great team player like Prigioni ends up as he definitely belongs in the league.

  14. Romnys Gonzalez says:

    Denver got robbed with that Trade. 1 proyect guy(Nick Johnson is like a C- if denver is lucky B- talent), 1 all around role deep bench player(Papanikolaou the best player in the trade), 2 future cut players(Prigioni and dorsey both doesnt have guarantied contracts) and a Protect Pick. Lawson is a top 10-15 PG in the league and all we get for him was that? No Jones? or KJ Mcdaniels? Capela? Harrell? Montejounas? . I’m very disappointed with the result

  15. BlackBam2x says:

    They trade Ty Lawson because they already have Emanuel mudiay much cheaper than Lawson..

  16. Kellio says:

    Was this the really the best they could get for Lawson? I know his stock has taken a hit, but all they really got was a few serviceable role players, but no one you could consider 6th man of the year material (I’d say Dorsey is the best value pickup of the bunch). I wonder what the first round pick protection is? Honestly even with no protection at all Denver better hope for a sleeper steal of a pick because with the way Houston look now it will be a late first rounder.

    • merrrlo says:

      Dorsey is not worth all that much, I’m afraid. He’s the kind of player who looks sort of promising when he’s not on your team and absolutely terrible when he is. I’d say Papanikolaou is a much better pickup, which is not to say this was anything but a salary dump, but if I was a Nuggets fan I’d be most excited about (1) less talent = more losses = more ping pong balls, (2) an extra draft pick from Houston, however low it may be, (3) Papanikolaou. That’s about it, really.

      • Rastamis says:

        If you were a Nuggets fan then you would know getting rid of Lawson, his salary and his attitude are a blessing.

  17. Dave says:

    As an aside, I’d love to see the Rockets run a bit of Horns style offense. I reckon Motiejunas and Jones can handle it and it would definitely suit its dribble/dish style offense. For me, they relied too much on Pick n Roll and Isos last season. That’s too much pressure on Harden.

  18. schradizzle says:

    If I was Rockets I would keep Peverly starting w Harden and use Lawson and main playmaker scorer w secondary unit

  19. BIG-GAME-JAMES-23 says:

    If the Rockets would have kept Josh Smith and with this addition of Ty Lawson they would have given themselves a chance to put themselves in contention for a chance to go to the finals.

    probably not, but maybe..

  20. showtime1911 says:

    Low risk high reward

  21. Hypothesis says:

    It’s going to be interesting to watch james harden play without the ball. Either way Lawson has always been under appreciated. This is a good pick up, rockets are definitely a contender now.

    • Dave says:

      Ummm, Harden played perfectly well without the ball in his OKC days. Provided they get the balance of possessions right (and that depends on everyone continuing to buy into McHale’s philosophies) then acquiring Lawson will take a lot of pressure off Harden always having to be the ball handler in pressure situations and allow greater flexibility in the dribble/dish basic (almost 5 out style basic) offense Houston runs. As a Rockets fan, I hope it works. Go H-Town!

    • Sam Reyes says:

      they are not, they are in the west and on top of that they have given several players, and lost some that contributed very well, if TL can work out his DUI problems he can give a nice reward, however, they are likely to fall in first or second round.