NBA Rumors: Analyzing Buzz Surrounding Derrick Rose and Ty Lawson

NBA Rumors: Analyzing Buzz Surrounding Derrick Rose and Ty Lawson

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Like the odd team still sticking around the playoff conversation (looking at you, Utah Jazz), the NBA rumor mill continues to remain a prominent fixture of the NBA discussion in mid-February. 

The names aren’t as big by any means. We’ve gone from Blake Griffin rumblings to late trade activity from the Cleveland Cavaliers blowing the league up. Now? It’s all about names like Derrick Rose and Ty Lawson

It sounds minor at face value, but key additions now could have big playoff implications. Contenders remain on the prowl for depth, which is arguably the biggest key to any run. And those viewing things through more of a long-term slant continued to monitor the market and how free agency might shape up. 

Right now, it doesn’t seem like free agency will feature a ton of mega deals. But the initial lead up to the trade deadline didn’t seem like much either, so a domino effect of sorts could start now. 

                

Ty Lawson

Remember Lawson?

He has spent this year balling in the Chinese Basketball Association after a stint with the Sacramento Kings a year ago, but it seemed like only a string of injuries could get him back to the Association. 

And here come the Washington Wizards. 

Already down John Wall for six-to-eight weeks and with Tim Frazier an unknown, the Wizards have considered seeing what Lawson has to offer, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN: 

Lawson, now 30 years old, put up 25.1 minutes per game over 69 appearances for the Kings in 2016-17, averaging 9.9 points and 4.8 assists in the process while shooting 45.4 percent from the field—the latter was his best mark in more than four years. Where Lawson regressed was his three-point shooting, with a career-worst 28.8 percent from deep. 

The Wizards, though, don’t figure to blink at something like this. Thanks to the Wall injury, they have been one of the most active teams on the rumor mill, most recently trying to swing a trade for Tyreke Evans of the Memphis Grizzlies before the deadline was reached, according to ESPN’s Zach Lowe.

Lawson would offer less upside and production, but he wouldn’t cost as much in the realm of long-term assets. While he won’t bump the surprising Tomas Satoransky’s minutes, adding Lawson makes plenty of sense for the Wizards. 

               

Mario Hezonja

Mario Hezonja is far from the biggest name—in large part thanks to his stumbling out of the gates as a player and for the simple fact he plays for the Orlando Magic. 

Hezonja was a disaster over his first couple of seasons in the league after the Magic made him the No. 5 pick in 2015. His defense limited his chances, forcing coaches to keep him on the bench to the point he has yet to average north of the 20-minute mark over three seasons. 

There’s also the whole situation in which the Magic decided they weren’t picking up his fourth-year option. Hezonja responded this season by boosting his stock while shooting career bests from the field (46.8) and long range (35.8) while averaging a career-high 19.3 minutes. 

Said stock boost meant the Magic went looking for a deal at the deadline, according to the Orlando Sentinel‘s Josh Robbins: "The Magic attempted to trade him prior to the Feb. 8 NBA trade deadline, but with his free agency approaching, the team found no takers.)"

The above makes Hezonja someone to watch for the remainder of the season. He’s playing for a long-term deal with the Magic or elsewhere now, and those outside teams have to like the idea of a former top-five pick who is still only 22 years old starting to figure things out. 

We won’t go as far as to suggest there will be a Hezonja bidding war, but crazier things have already happened this year. 

            

Derrick Rose

The Rose saga clearly isn’t going to just die down. 

For those (perhaps mercifully) not keeping track, Rose got caught up in a trade sending him from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Utah Jazz. Now he’s on the market because he was a tool for a deal, not necessarily someone the Jazz wanted to thrust into lineups. 

In what should come as a surprise to nobody, the Minnesota Timberwolves were linked to Rose mostly because of his connection with head coach Tom Thibodeau, according to the New York Times Marc Stein. But Wojnarowski was right there reporting those Wizards were on the market for his services as well. 

If the situation sounds gridlocked, that’s because it probably is. Stein reported a new development Tuesday: 

And why not? Why wouldn’t a team like the Wizards wait until after the break to see how an injury comes along? Rose is a big name, but he suited up in 16 games for the Cavaliers, averaging 9.8 points on 43.9 percent shooting in a minimal role. 

It’s hard to look at Rose’s tenure with the Cavaliers and think a team should rush out to get him. His shoot-first ways didn’t mesh well with LeBron James, just as they didn’t with Carmelo Anthony in New York. 

There’s value in Rose as a depth option and perhaps scorer, but the NBA is clearly content to wait and see. 

Which, of course, means fans have to wait even longer to find out where the former MVP ends up as well. 

          

All stats and info via ESPN.com unless otherwise specified.

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February 14, 2018 at 05:32AM

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