Photo credit: Trung Ho / TrungHo.ca
The Toronto Raptors’ point guard depth took a bit of a hit on Monday, as Lorenzo Brown suffered an ankle sprain in the first quarter of Raptors 905’s game against Maine.
Brown had only played five minutes before disappearing to the locker room, handing the reigns to Kethan Savage and Kaza Keane. He’d scored four points and collected two steals before checking out.
If Brown is going to miss any significant amount of time, the primary loss is to the Raptors, given he’s a two-way player. While the team has done a great job of limiting the workload for Kyle Lowry and getting big contributions from Delon Wright and Fred VanVleet, they’d long preferred having three active point guards, and any additional off-nights for Lowry after the All-Star break would be made easier by Brown’s presence. Brown still has an estimated nine days left on his 45-day two-way allotment, plus an unlimited number of days after the G League regular season ends on March 24.
The bigger on-court impact would be felt with the 905. Brown is the engine of their offense, a legitimate G League MVP candidate as one of the league’s higher-usage scorers and it’s leading passer by assist percentage. The 905 have eyes on repeating as G League Champions, normally an impossible task given the dramatic turnover between years and one made far more likely with Brown at the helm. He entered play Monday averaging 18.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, 9.5 assists, and two steals, flirting with a triple-double almost nightly while the 905 outscored teams by 13.1 points per-100 possessions with him on the floor.
Savage and Keane would stand to see extended run if he misses time for the 905, with additional playmaking duty shifting to combo-guards like Davion Berry and Aaron Best, improving wing creator Malcolm Miller, and even post-fulcrum Kennedy Meeks.
The team is optimistic that the sprain is mild, and sitting him down is a precautionary measure. With a long layoff coming up after Tuesday’s game, Brown will have a window to get right before the final playoff push.