Title: HOW THE CAVS WILL TRY TO CONTAIN RAPTORS’ DEROZAN
Date: May 1, 2017
Original Source: Vice
Synopsis: For my latest at Vice, I wrote about DeMar DeRozan consistently overcoming challenges, and the sort of test the Cleveland Cavaliers may provide.
The Toronto Raptors are built around their two All-Stars. This is not new, or groundbreaking. With a pair of the best handful of offensive guards in basketball, the Raptors have designed an offense around the singular driving abilities and pick-and-roll mastery of DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry.
Defenses know this, too, and consistently elite regular-season offenses have devolved into mediocrity in the postseason. Annually, this is among the biggest questions facing the Raptors as they enter the playoffs: Can a terrific offense that leans on one-on-one attacking, that relies on free-throws and difficult shot-making, that can theoretically be game-planned for in straightforward fashion, score enough when the game changes in the playoffs?
The answer, over the past few seasons, has been discouraging. The Raptors have grown and experienced playoff success, but they’ve done so at times in spite of their offense. Lowry and DeRozan have continued to face questions. DeRozan has the lowest postseason effective field-goal percentage of any active player; Lowry has the 10th-worst eFG% and the second-worst field-goal percentage. These questions persist because they are reasonable ones.