In the wake of an impressive Summer League campaign, Dewan Hernandez is now officially a Toronto Raptor. The 59th pick in this year’s draft agreed to terms on a partially guaranteed three-year deal with the team on Friday night, per Shams Charania.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 13, 2019
Hernandez played all five games for the Raptors in Las Vegas, averaging 12.8 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game. After spending more than a year away from competitive basketball, Hernandez had a rocky opening to the tournament before rounding into form during the midway point of the competition. Hernandez showed incredibly soft touch and ambidexterity around the rim and used every bit of his 235 pound frame to battle on the offensive glass.
It was an awkward adjustment for Hernandez to share the court with Boucher in a double-big lineup and the paint was a logjam early, however once they developed more on-court chemistry both players’ games began to click. By tournament’s end Hernandez and Boucher were a devastating frontcourt partnership, the latter showcasing his expanded shot making and ballhandling abilities. Despite only shooting 1 for 9 from three-point range, Hernandez’ outside shot is not ‘broken’ and the Raptors should be confident that a few tweaks could turn it into another weapon for the versatile big man.
Where Hernandez fits into the Raptors this season will be worth noting. There are definite areas in his game that are raw and a lot of early time spent in the G League should be beneficial. Hernandez’ touch may be smooth, but his faceup game was very much a boom or bust proposition in Las Vegas. At times, Hernandez would attack closeouts with a great first dribble and finish with either hand, yet when the defender was set he occasionally failed to get separation and flipped a few wild shots at the rim.
Another pleasing sign was the increased comfort Hernandez had with Jordan Loyd and fellow new signing Terence Davis in the pick-and-roll. Hernandez’ was physical setting screens and his own ability to put the ball on the floor negated some of the pressure on the primary ballhandlers. On a few occasions this ability helped Hernandez dribble into a few DHO shot oppotunities for Toronto’s outside shooters.
I will be doing a deep dive on Hernandez’ Summer League performance as well as some other key performers that should be up early next week.