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After an initial unwillingness to part with Lawson post-NBA trade deadline, the Rockets could use the savings on a possible buyout to clear salary-cap space to acquire other players becoming available through buyouts, league sources said.
Houston discussed trade-deadline deals on Lawson, but was unable to find a suitable trade. Lawson is still owed $3.2 million on his 2015-16 contract, having already been paid $9.2 million.
The Rockets are $524,000 under the hard salary cap.
For Lawson, the experiment of co-existing with All-Star guard James Harden hasn’t worked this season. Lawson has carried himself as a professional throughout a difficult season, but simply has been unable to thrive with Harden, who is a ball-dominant scoring guard.
Lawson, 28, will likely be attractive to playoff teams searching for guard depth or those out of the postseason race that want to give Lawson the chance at a test run for the future. Lawson will need to agree to a buyout and be waived by Tuesday in order to be added to a team’s postseason roster.
Lawson has averaged six points and 3.5 assists in 22.8 minutes a game for the Rockets. In his seven-year career, Lawson has averaged 13.3 points and 6.3 assists.
The Rockets made a trade with Denver to acquire Lawson in July.
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