DeMar DeRozan, the man who declared “I am Toronto” after re-signing with the Raptors this offseason, has just been named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week for a third time this season.
Here’s the press release:
DeMar DeRozan has been named Eastern Conference Player of the Week (Jan. 9-15). Third time this season DeRozan has earned POW honours. pic.twitter.com/MJ5YiX41ro— RaptorsMR (@RaptorsMR) January 16, 2017
What did it take for a Player of the Week award this time? For DeRozan, it meant leading the team to a 3-0 week while averaging 30.7 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 2.3 assists. Oh yeah: DeRozan also shot a wonderful 51.5 percent from the field and 87.5 percent from the free throw line. I’m beginning to get the feeling his level of play this season is, in fact, sustainable.
As you’ll also recall, DeRozan was the man who refused to lose against the Boston Celtics, exploding in the second half of that game (after getting hit with a technical foul) to lead a comeback against the Raptors’ rival. He dropped a season-high 41 points in that game. Everything after that — the calm dismantling of both the Nets and Knicks — is just delicious gravy. DeRozan’s game, and what he means to the Raptors this season, is officially a gift.
I italicized the word “third” in the opening paragraph because DeRozan is now the first Raptor ever to win Player of the Week honours three times in a single season. He is now tied with Kyle Lowry for third on the all-time list behind Chris Bosh and Vince Carter (both of whom won the award seven times).
DeRozan really is Toronto. Congrats to him.