The Toronto Raptors have been hot the last seven games. This surge has happened without the services of Kyle Lowry. Fred VanVleet has been the player that stepped up and filled the role during Lowry’s absence.
Fred VanVleet filling the void
In the seven game stretch Fred VanVleet has averaged 21.6 points, 8 assists and 3.7 rebounds. He is shooting 35% at the three-point arc and 88 percent from the foul line. VanVleet has also increased his defensive tenacity, averaging 2.3 steals per game.
The Raptors haven’t skipped a beat
Seven games ago Kyle Lowry sprained his right ankle causing him to leave the game. At the time they were 7-2. The Raptors haven’t skipped a beat in his absence as they are now 12-4 and are in a three-way tie for second in the East. Ironically, this is the same record the Raptors started with last season when they won the NBA Finals.
The Raptors earned their 12th victory on Monday against the 76ers. The 76ers were completely shutdown and their star center Joel Embiid was nonexistent. This season still looks like the same three teams as last season fighting for that first seed ( Milwaukee Bucks, the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Toronto Raptors).
The Raptors expect Kyle Lowry back real soon, meaning VanVleet will return to his place at SG. VanVleet for the season is averaging 18 points a game and 7.7 assists a game. Even if we see a small decline in his production, he should definitely be in consideration for an All-star appearance.
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