TUESDAY, 3:21pm: A pursuit of Lawson isn’t on the forefront of the Mavs’ priorities, reports Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com (Twitter link), citing the point guard’s off-court issues.
MONDAY, 3:08pm: Ty Lawson has been eyeing the Mavs and the team reciprocates the intrigue, as Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders hears (Twitter link). Lawson hinted at a desire to play for Dallas in a since-deleted Instagram exchange last month, but the Nuggets, who have Lawson under contract through 2016/17, hold sway.
Chris Broussard of ESPN.com reported shortly before the deadline that the Nuggets were trying to trade the speedy point guard, but Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports and Christopher Dempsey of the Denver Post heard that Denver was merely listening to pitches. The Nuggets wanted multiple first-round picks if they were to part with Lawson, sources told Grantland’s Zach Lowe at the time. The Mavs already owe their 2016 first-rounder to the Celtics as part of the Rajon Rondo trade.
Rondo’s failure to take command of the point guard position in Dallas would no doubt be at the root of any push the team might make for Lawson. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle acknowledged even before the playoffs were done that the Mavs aren’t expected to re-sign Rondo, who’ll be a free agent as of July 1st. Dallas has Devin Harris on a long-term deal, and Raymond Felton reportedly told the team that he’ll opt in, but there’s no clear-cut starter for next season at the point in Dallas, particularly with J.J. Barea also set for free agency. The Mavs are reportedly poised to make runs at big men LaMarcus Aldridge and DeAndre Jordan, leaving little capacity for the team to sign a point guard of equal caliber.
The Celtics and Nuggets engaged in exploratory talks about Lawson before the deadline, as Lowe reported, which was around the same time that the Bucks were being linked to him as well, as Kyler wrote then. Kings coach George Karl would love for the Kings to acquire Lawson, a person familiar with Karl’s thinking told Bleacher Report’s Howard Beck in February, though that was before Vlade Divac took command of Sacramento’s front office. Lawson clashed with ex-Nuggets coach Brian Shaw, Karl’s replacement in Denver, Lowe heard, and there was tension and frustration between Lawson and the Nuggets at the deadline, according to Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders. Shortly thereafter, Nuggets GM Tim Connelly implored Lawson to “grow up.”