DeMar DeRozan notes C.J. Miles brings ‘calmness’ to Raptors
The Toronto Raptors didn’t make any massive moves in the offseason other than re-signing star point guard Kyle Lowry and reeling in three-and-D veteran C.J. Miles into the fold.
Miles is competing for the starting spot at small forward, hopeful to bring the Raptors what they once wanted out of DeMarre Carroll a few offseasons ago when he was signed to a four-year, $58 million contract in 2015.
This is believed to be Miles’ spot to lose as he competes against the 6-foot-4 Norm Powell for a spot in the starting lineup.
The 30-year-old swingman has not only shot efficiently in this preseason, but made game-winning plays like getting a steal and racing down court, faking a behind-the-back pass and dishing it out to young Delon Wright for the finish at the rim.
“(Miles brought) a sense of calm… just his poise that he goes out there and plays with,” Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan told The Canadian Press after the win. “You can tell he’s been around the block a few times and that’s great for the young guys.”
Asked to speculate on a potential starting spot, Miles had this to say.
“That’s above my pay grade. Doesn’t matter,” Miles said. “I’m too old to worry about that. I’m just playing basketball.”
Head coach Dwane Casey was also mum on his decision with only one game left against the Chicago Bulls on Friday before the start of the regular season.
“No, no, no, no,” Casey said, when asked — again — whether he had made a decision. “And if I did, I couldn’t tell you right now anyway.”
Miles had a team-high 19 points in the 22-point win against the Detroit Pistons, game which saw seven players score in double figures for the Raptors.