The Toronto Raptors took down the Minnesota Timberwolves 105-86 to earn their first win of the season Sunday night. For the most part, the team struggled. Andrea Bargnani, Jonas Valanciunas, and Landry Fields combined for 19 points, and with the exception of Alan Anderson who scored 18, the bench was lacking as well.
However, the Raptors back court of DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry carried the Raptors once again. DeRozan finished with 22 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals while Lowry finished with an identical line with the exception of 3 more assists. While it’s only been 3 games, DeRozan and Lowry have been shining for the Raptors, and are becoming a dynamic duo that compliment each other perfectly.
Lowry, 26, has brought a breath of fresh air to the Raptors, giving them an electric point guard. Lowry has a legitimate shot at the all-star game this year, and at this rate, he could be joining Deron Williams and Rajon Rondo as an elite point guard in the East.
DeRozan, 23,just got extended by the Raptors and Bryan Colangelo received tons of criticism for the move. DeRozan has proved the doubters wrong so far, showing a three point shot, improved defense and rebounding, and continuing his offensive aggression, drawing a ton of contact and constantly getting to the line.
Both of these guys have a chance to become top players at their position, and they should carry the Raptors this season along with Andrea Bargnani. The Raptors have multiple threats and this will open up the offence for the whole team.
Where do DeRozan and Lowry rank among the top backcourts in the league? It’s hard to classify them as elite (Deron Williams and Joe Johnson, Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili) however they fit along with the next tier quite well (Ty Lawson and Andre Iguodala, Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis, Jeremy Lin and James Harden). DeRozan and Lowry are in good company, and they definitely deserve to be considered a top 10 backcourt in the league with room to grow.
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