There’s no doubt that DeMar DeRozan is the franchise player for the Toronto Raptors. This season has been the ultimate test for the All-Star guard. The Raptors are currently the best team in the Eastern Conference and look to be a true championship contender this year.
Much of the Raptors’ success is because of DeRozan’s stellar play. In fact, he has been remarkably efficient lately. As it turns out, his efficiency is due to him doing less dribbling, per David Thorpe of Flo Sports.
Some great scorers are the type that attack with no real plan, trusting skills and craft as they improvise. As elite scorers go, DeRozan spends less time dribbling and less time overall with the ball, per touch, according to the data Second Spectrum provides the NBA, than most of the top level scorers. He ranks tied for 13th with Jimmy Butler in “frontcourt touches” per game among the highest-scoring guards and wings in the NBA (Westbrook, Harden, LeBron lead the way)
DeRozan’s improved footwork and mid-range shooting allow him to destroy defenses, even without the excessive dribbling. Actually, the Raptors star doesn’t even spend a lot of time with the ball in his hands. This is a true testament to his efficiency this season and has contributed much to the Raptors success.
Unlike his previous seasons, DeRozan has shown that he is a consistent and efficient scorer that is worthy of leading the Raptors. As Toronto heads into the postseason, it stands to reason that the Raptors guard will become a problem for opposing teams.
Though, all of this will mean nothing if DeRozan can’t use his skills to bring the Raptors their first franchise championship this year.