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Casey: "We Have To Participate In The Trend Of Going Small At The End of Games"

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Another not-so-ringing endorsement for Jonas Valanciunas at the end of games.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

In a wide-ranging interview with John Schuhmann, Dwane Casey was asked about the role of Jonas Valanciunas as the league moves towards smaller lineups. The head coach did not mince words about favoring going small:

Q: Is there still a big role for Jonas Valanciunas in the way that you want to play and in the way the league is going? How can you use him, but also make up for his deficiencies when he's on the floor?

DC: The league is going smaller, but as long as the goal is at 10 feet, size is going to matter. You still got to have size.

At the end of games, the trend is to go smaller. Threes are fours, fours are fives, and your roster has to fit that. Adding DeMarre gives us that flexibility. He can play some at the four, with Scola or Patrick Patterson at the five. We're better equipped to play that way now than we were a year ago.

The league is going to their more skilled guys toward the end of games. Trends come and go, but right now, we have to participate in that trend.

So, it seems the Raptors -- as we expected -- will utilize DeMarre Carroll at the four in late game situations as it dictates, and it wouldn't be surprising to see Scola and Patterson close out games at the five. Again, all of this is situational. We've heard other teams entertain the idea of smaller lineups next season -- ie. Paul George at the four for the Pacers -- so it'll be a matchup decision on a night to night basis.

The Q&A also includes Casey's expectations for Terrence Ross, what they identified as issues in the playoffs last season, and more. You can read the entire interview here.