Dwane Casey hasn’t really received much criticism coming into his new coaching job for the Toronto Raptors. Praised on the defensive turnaround he created for the Raptors squad, there’s little doubt that Casey hasn’t brought his positives to this squad. However, in the first two games of the season, Casey has proved that offensively, he needs some help.
Out of a timeout down the stretch in both games, Casey’s plays have not been run effectively, leading to the Raptors being outscored down the stretch and ultimately losing both games because of it. There is no way the Raptors can become a playoff team this season if they continuously lose the close, winnable games down the stretch. This is partially due to a lack of a closer, bad play calling down the stretch, and poor rotations.
Casey’s rotation’s have been head-scratching so far to say the least. Rookie Jonas Valanciunas logged 12 minutes last night despite doing a solid job defending Brook Lopez of the Brooklyn Nets, in comparison to the other big men that tried to. Casey initially took Valanciunas out due to foul trouble, but didn’t give him much of a chance to redeem himself. Lopez went on to burn Amir Johnson and Aaron Gray, and finished the game with 27 points.
Terrence Ross logged zero minutes. Yes, zero. It’s not as if Landry Fields and Alan Anderson were lighting up the Nets, in fact it was quite the opposite. I don’t understand how Casey expects the rookie to develop without giving him any run.
Casey’s line-ups were often unbalanced, where at points Ed Davis was the go-to guy offensively. Anderson, Dominic McGuire, and Gray all played in the fourth quarter, while Andrea Bargnani and DeMar DeRozan rested to the point where they had gotten cold and weren’t effective re-entering the game.
Bottom line is, Casey needs to either get his rotations and offensive play calling in check, or Bryan Colangelo needs to look into hiring an offensive assistant coach to help out Casey. I think Casey has done a fantastic job with the Raptors thus far, but in order for him to take the team to the next level, he needs to work these offensive problems out.
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