Raptors Projections: Terence Davis, Kyle Lowry, free agent decisions and more

Title: Raptors Projections: Terence Davis, Kyle Lowry, free agent decisions and more
Date: October 21, 2020
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I took a look at how Terence Davis, Kyle Lowry and the rest of the Raptors project for 2020-21.

There is impressing as a rookie, and then there is what Terence Davis II did in 2019-20, making even optimists about his NBA potential look muted in their offseason praise.

Believed early on to be the next in a growing line of Toronto Raptors underdrafted or undrafted gems, Davis played his way on to the All-Rookie team. He appeared in every regular season game for the Raptors, averaging 7.5 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists while generally looking the part of slasher and potential secondary playmaker. He was given opportunities to run some pick-and-roll in a combo-guard role instead of a pure wing, and he was given opportunities to slot in alongside starters as a lower-usage option. In both cases, his performance was encouraging about his long-term outlook. Even after not playing him for the bulk of the playoffs, head coach Nick Nurse affirmed his faith in Davis’ chances to become “special.”

Even Player Impact Plus-Minus, which was higher on Davis than his status as an undrafted free agent would suggest, underestimated him significantly. The Stepien’s PIPM-based model gave Davis only a 20 percent chance of becoming a rotation player, which he’s already shown to be. What’s more, his estimated 2.3 wins added in 2019-20 were more than his projected early-career peak and more than double his projected five-year average value. (“Davis would be my bet to outperform his pre-draft expectations by the widest margin among the four true rookies here,” was my analysis at the time.)

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