Nuggets looking for a Top 10 pick…

…and they’re willing to part with Ty Lawson to get it, per Chad Ford.

Nuggets GM Mark Warkentein has been calling around trying to gauge interest in teams selling the pick. According to sources Warkentein is offering Ty Lawson for the pick. A Nuggets source said the Nuggets are looking for big man to fill up their front line. Several bigs including Cole Aldrich, Ed Davis, Ekpe Udoh, Patrick Patterson, Daniel Orton and Hassan Whiteside could be there at 10.

If true, this seems like an especially dumb thing to do. In Lawson, the Nuggets have perhaps the fourth or fifth best player from last year’s draft, yet they’re shopping him for a Top 10 pick in a draft that doesn’t appear to be as deep. A top pick is nice, but many players taken in the first 10 picks turn out to be busts. So until they prove themselves in the NBA, a draft pick is an unknown quantity. The Nuggets are try to trade a known quantity (Lawson) for an unknown quantity. Dumb.

Moreover, Chauncey Billups isn’t getting any younger. He’ll be 34 when the season starts, and with the importance of point guard play in the NBA, the Nuggets appear to be willing to trade away their floor leader of the future for a pick.

It would make a lot more sense for a team like the Hornets, who have Chris Paul and Darren Collison, to try to move Collison for some immediate (veteran) help, because Paul is still young and is the franchise cornerstone. Still, I don’t think you move Collison for a Top 10 pick, unless you just fall in love with a guy and think he’ll fill a pressing need (that will help keep Paul in town when his contract expires).

The Pacers are interested in both players, per the Indianapolis Star.

The Pacers are interested in Lawson, according to a source.

The Pacers are willing to give up their pick – No. 10 – in next week’s draft to get player that will help them immediately.

The Pacers wouldn’t be searching for a point guard if they had taken Lawson instead of Tyler Hansbrough last year.

If the Pacers can turn the #10 pick into Lawson or Collison, it would be a coup for the organization.

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