13 People who turned their backs on the Denver Nuggets

These former Nuggets did not leave on the best terms.
Denver Nuggets, Andre Iguodala
Denver Nuggets, Andre Iguodala / Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
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6. Ty Lawson

The Nuggets acquired Lawson in a 2009 draft night trade with the Timberwolves. He backed up Chauncey Billups in his first two seasons before taking over as their starter when he was traded in the Melo deal. The 5’11 point guard was a bucket and strong playmaker. Denver made the playoffs in each of his first four seasons but never advanced beyond the opening round.

Things started to go sour after George Karl’s exit in 2013. The Nuggets finished ten games under .500 and missed the playoffs the following year. They drafted Emmanuel Mudiay with the seventh overall pick in 2015 after a second straight playoff miss, and Lawson saw the writing on the wall. He began posting on social media about leaving Denver and finally got his wish when the Rockets traded for him.

Lawson was dealing with legal issues too after being arrested twice in 2015 on DUI charges. His massive contract did not help. The Nuggets were eager to move on, and the point guard shared no ill will for the franchise that helped make him a household name.

Ty Lawson turned his back on the Denver Nuggets. They handed him the keys to the franchise, but the 5’11 point guard never displayed the leadership necessary to make them a serious contender. Lawson played just two years in the NBA after leaving the Nuggets and was out of the league before his 30th birthday.