Dwane Casey signed a three-year deal with the Raptors this past offseason, and in response to questions about whether he’d be back for next season after the team’s stunning four-game loss to the Wizards, Casey said he hasn’t heard otherwise, notes Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca (Twitter link). Players came to the coach’s defense at the team’s season-ending media interviews, with DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry and soon-to-be free agent Amir Johnson among those expressing support, as Lewenberg and James Herbert of CBSSports.com relay (All Twitter links). There’s more from Toronto after the team’s playoff collapse:
- Raptors GM Masai Ujiri refused to sacrifice long-term assets for veteran help at the deadline and, aside from Lowry’s deal, he didn’t make commitments this past summer that would compromise the team’s future flexibility, observes Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun. Ujiri knew the team wasn’t as strong as last season’s run and its early-season play this year indicated, Wolstat writes, adding that while he doesn’t expect Ujiri to completely rebuild from here, the roster is positioned for significant changes.
- Indeed, the team’s brass privately tempered its expectations for this season, knowing that the roster is young and has holes, Lewenberg tweets, expressing his belief that the team will keep Casey around given the low bar the team set.
- Uncertainty looms around Jonas Valanciunas and Terrence Ross, both of whom are eligible for rookie scale extensions this summer, and Frank Zicarelli of the Toronto Sun believes that while each still has much to learn, Valanciunas is the one worth keeping.