Ty Lawson was one of the most coveted point guards in the NBA when he was turning the screw for the Denver Nuggets only 18 months ago.
How times change. Still only 28-years-old, Lawson undoubtedly has plenty of potential left to justify, but the last 12 months of his career have been nothing short of a drastic setback.
After being traded to the Houston Rockets last summer, Lawson was set to form a Big Three of sorts with Dwight Howard and James Harden. However, the latter's insistence on having the ball made things difficult for the former Nuggets playmaker and he struggled to adapt.
He was also suspended for three games in January on an account of driving under the influence the previous summer. He was subsequently waived by the Rockets on March 1 and finished out the season with the Indiana Pacers.
Speaking to Slamonline.com, Lawson detailed how tough the past year has been for him.
"It was tough. Going into the season with Houston, we thought we were going to be one of the top teams and a title contender. I guess it just wasn’t a good fit on all ends. From not having the ball in my hands to everything that was going down in Houston, it just wasn’t a good fit. It was tough going from starting and playing well to coming off the bench, then not playing and going through every process that there is in the NBA in one season.
"This summer has been all about basketball. Like you said, last year, I was dealing with a lot of different things. Now, it’s just strictly basketball and getting better as a person. I feel like I’m more there mentally now, more mature, and just ready to go and help a team win."
With a clear head, Lawson is ready to find his next challenge in the NBA and is determined to rebuild his once promising reputation.
For teams interested in the point guard, Lawson is hoping to become a part of a faster style of play that compliments his abilities next season.
"I would definitely prefer an uptempo style of offence, fast paced, but just learning from my situation last year has been key for me. I’ve been working hard on my spot-up jumpers, creating my shots off one-on-ones plus in the half court offence; coming off pick and rolls and just things like that.
"An uptempo style is what I’m more comfortable with, but this summer is all about working on different half-court sets as well and playing more off the ball because I guess that’s where the NBA is going now. The NBA is not just one person handling the ball the majority of the time now, so I’ve just been working on a lot of game-type situations where I’m off the ball, but an uptempo style would suit me great."
Teams around the NBA should not forget what a talent Lawson can and has been. With the money flying around the league right now, he will be a useful addition somewhere for sure.