Raptors’ Kyle Lowry Returns From Injury
The Toronto Raptors’ big acquisition this summer, Kyle Lowry, strained a thigh muscle at the end of the team’s training camp in Halifax and missed Toronto’s first three preseason games. Today after practice, head coach Dwane Casey announced that his new point guard is available for Wednesday’s tilt versus the Wizards.
“(Kyle Lowry) has been working at practice yesterday and today,” Casey said. “So unless there are any setbacks and I don’t foresee any, he should be able to go (on Wednesday).”
Much of the optimism in Toronto for the coming season has centered on the former Houston Rockets starting point guard and the changes he brings to the Raptors at both ends of the floor, so Casey needs to get Lowry situated into his spot in the rotation and acclimatized to his new teammates as quickly as possible. Lowry will play as many minutes on Wednesday as is safe and reasonable.
“It is very important and he’ll get some minutes,” Casey said. “We’ll just see how many and what stretches. We’ll see what his conditioning is. He is behind, but it’s not like he is out of condition. He has done a great job of working with (Raptors director of sports science) Alex (McKechnie) on his conditioning while he was doing his rehab.”
Lowry was able to complete training camp and he has been at all of the Raptors’ practices, so Casey believes his point guard is ready for game action on Wednesday, aside from a little rust.
“He is a student of the game and is probably one of the smartest players that we have, so he won’t miss anything intellectually,” Casey said. “As far as knowing what we do offensively, he knows that. The only thing he’ll be a little bit behind in is his aerobic conditioning.”
“I had to get healthy, but I feel better now and I am back practicing, so I look at that as the past,” Lowry said. “I have been around, so it is going to be easier to get in sync with the guys. It is still going to be a little bit different playing in the games, but it is pretty easy in practice.
“I am going to be rusty, but I hope to pick up where I left off earlier in training camp.”
The Raptors still have a full two weeks and four preseason games remaining before they open at home on October 31 and Coach Casey will need all of that time to establish his eight-to-nine-man rotation for the regular season. Lowry is getting back in the game just in time.