Three Raptors Injured In Final Scrimmage
The Toronto Raptors traveled to Rama, Ontario on Sunday to put on an intrasquad scrimmage game at the Casino Rama Entertainment Center. It was to be a fun filled afternoon for the fans that raised some money for the Raptors’ charity, the MLSE Team Up Foundation, and let the team get in a little more work prior to the start of the season on Wednesday.
However, there are always risks when players hit the court and this scrimmage became pretty competitive. Before the end of the game, Jose Calderon, John Lucas III and DeMar DeRozan had sustained injuries, although all three seem to be minor.
“We had a good workout and a great crowd here at the Casino, but we were just fortunate to get out without any major injuries,” Raptors head coach Dwane Casey explained. “(We have) bumps and bruises with Jose, John and DeMar to the eye. We will evaluate them tomorrow and see where we are.”
Calderon’s injury looked to be the worst by far, as he hit the ground in pain and had to be helped off the court. He was quickly assisted to the dressing room while putting minimal weight on his injured leg.
“Jose got kneed in the thigh, which is one of the worst and we just won’t know until tomorrow,” Casey said. “It’s part of the game and hopefully he is going to be okay by Wednesday.”
This part of the game has been the Raptors’ Achilles heel in past seasons as the team has not had adequate point guard depth. This year was supposed to be different because of the acquisitions of Kyle Lowry and Lucas, but on the final play of the scrimmage, Lucas crashed to the floor under rookie Quincy Acy.
“It twisted and got kind of locked up a little, but it was more of a scare than anything,” Lucas said. “I felt a sharp pain, but it eventually went away and I wasn’t going to lie on the ground, so I saw if I could just walk it off. I never sit out. It’s not in me. It’s not in my DNA, so I am just going to fight through it. I am just banged up a little bit and I will be ready to go on Wednesday.”
Lucas walked off the floor under his own power and did seem okay, although he was unusually subdued after the scrimmage. It will be very good news for the Raptors if the injury is as minor as Lucas indicated.
While Calderon is one of the Raptors’ leaders and a stabilizing influence with the second group, Lucas has shown he can run the offense effectively in the preseason and his credentials with the Chicago Bulls speak for themselves.
There was no additional information about the poke in the eye suffered by DeRozan, but it did not appear to be serious at the time and hopefully the news will be positive after practice on Monday.
A fun-filled scrimmage on a Sunday afternoon effectively illustrated the need for depth in the NBA, as three Raptors could easily have been sidelined by injury for the home opener. If the team is lucky, everyone will be back by Wednesday, but the Raptors may also need to utilize some of that depth a little earlier than expected.