Dwane Casey spoke to the media after the Raptors’ blowout home loss to the Thunder, and was asked about Kyle Lowry’s poor play of late, and whether it was a concern:
“It’s a concern, there’s reasons for that. Everybody at this time of the year is going through something. There’s other things he has to do: get to the rim, kick it out, and do those things. He’ll be OK.”
When asked whether he was injured:
“I’m not going to mention it. There’s reasons why his shooting is the way it is.”
When prodded more on whether injury was a decision to give him the Boston game off:
“Part of it, yes. That was part of it. His elbow was sore, and that answers the question – I don’t know why you’re asking me a question you already know the answer to”
Over the last four games, Lowry has been shooting 16-61 (26%) while shooting the same percentage from three. He missed the Boston game with a sore elbow, and during these four games he’s averaging 36.5 minutes. Overall, for the season, Lowry is averaging 2.7 minutes more than last season, and has logged 228 more minutes, which is good for second in the NBA. It should be noted that the type of minutes he’s logging are a little different, as he’s playing off the ball a lot more this year with Cory Joseph handling point guard duties.
Last season after returning form injury, Lowry averaged 34 minutes a game in the final eight games of the regular season, which contributed to his playoff performance. The Raptors have nine games remaining and with Lowry noticeably out of form, the question will become whether Dwane Casey tires to play him into form, or rests him ahead of the playoffs, hoping that his recent ails are due to fatigue. I think we all know what’s going to happen.