Kyle Lowry will be go-to option against the Wizards, as Kawhi Leonard rests up.
The Toronto Raptors have decided to rest star acquisition Kawhi Leonard this evening after fielding him for heavy minutes in their victory over the Boston Celtics. Tonight, the Toronto Raptors are scheduled to face the Washington Wizards away from home. Besides Leonard, the Raptors will also miss out on combo guard Delon Wright who is still recovering from a left adductor strain he suffered in the preseason.
Kawhi Leonard's 35:52 of playing time in the first of back-to-back games last night, ranked as the highest among Raptors' players. Not to mention, he also played for over 37 minutes in the season-opening contest on Wednesday, against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The decision to rest Kawhi certainly hinges on two factors. One: Kawhi only played 9 games last season as he recovered from a right quad injury. Secondly, the Toronto Raptors don't make the same mistakes San Antonio Spurs' made in alienating their star forward. Hence, the decision to allow Kawhi Leonard some "healing space or time" is something that bodes well for the team's long-term plans.
Without Kawhi in the lineup, Nick Nurse will likely let the offense flow through Kyle Lowry's hands. In yesterday's game, Lowry made several concessions to his game, in order to accommodate Leonard's presence in the lineup. The good money sides with Lowry falling in love with Masai Ujiri's unpopular decision to uproot the roster in the offseason, especially if the wins keep piling up.