Title: Raptors’ Delon Wright’s emergence one of the silver linings of Kyle Lowry’s injury
Date: April 11, 2017
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about the crafty play of Delon Wright, who may have grown from an unfortunate silver lining into a potential playoff rotation piece.
The writing was on the wall. Kyle Lowry was ready to return following wrist surgery, and so Delon Wright’s time in the rotation was coming to a close. Lowry missed 21 games – the entirety of the time since Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker had been acquired – and with only four games left before the playoffs, head coach Dwane Casey talking about a playoff rotation, the next few outings standing to be dress rehearsals of sorts.
This was through no fault of Wright’s own, as he acquitted himself well in Lowry’s absence.
After missing the first half of the season following summer shoulder surgery of his own, Wright used a successful D-League rehabilitation stint to send a message to the big club that he was ready if needed. The message was affirmed in his second appearance of the season, when he unexpectedly played 28 minutes in helping lead the Raptors to a comeback victory over the Charlotte Hornets heading into the all-star break. The timing proved fortuitous – Lowry’s wrist first bothered him that night, and Wright had shown he was ready to fill in as needed.
And that’s how things played out. The sophomore slid capably into Cory Joseph’s backup role as Joseph slid into Lowry’s, playing 17.4 minutes and averaging six points, 1.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and one steal. Wright showed encouraging improvement on his jumper, perhaps the most important element of his development in terms of his ceiling, and other than a pair of games in mid-March where he received quick hooks in favour of Fred VanVleet, he looked the part he was asked to play.