Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson sidelined by shoulder injury

Denver scoring leader hoping for quick return to the floor
by Aaron Lopez

When Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson went to bed after an early morning return from Sacramento, he figured his sore left shoulder would feel better after some rest.

He woke up and could barely raise his arm.

Still bothered by a strained left rotator cuff, Lawson sat out Wednesday night’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats. With some treatment over the next couple days, he is hoping to return soon.

"He's making progress," Nuggets coach Brian Shaw. "He says it feels better than what he felt initially but still not good enough to play."

Lawson is in the midst of his best NBA season, averaging career highs of 17.9 points and 8.9 assists. He missed two games earlier this season with a strained hamstring.

In Lawson’s place, Shaw started Nate Robinson alongside Randy Foye in the backcourt. Foye scored a season-high 33 points, but Robinson left in the first quarter with a sprained left knee. An MRI is scheduled for Thursday.

“I don’t think anybody can replace Ty or what he brings to our team,” Shaw said. “His speed is unique. I’d be fooling myself if I thought that anybody else on our roster could mimic that.”

Lawson injured his shoulder while committing a foul against Kings forward Jason Thompson with less than two minutes left in the fourth quarter of Denver’s 125-117 victory at Sacramento.

“I really didn’t feel it because of the adrenaline,” he said.

The pain got worse after the game and Lawson said it’s still difficult to raise his arm above his shoulder. Denver’s next game is Friday against the Toronto Raptors.