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Dinos & Digits: The Raptors Win Big and Lose Small

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This week, we look at a reason for some optimism in Lowry’s three-point prowess, overall value, and more.

NBA: Boston Celtics at Toronto Raptors Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back to Dinos & Digits, a column where we dive into the box scores and find five interesting or strange Raptors statistics and put them on front street for discussion.

We like to explore a mix of both individual player and team statistics, ranging from raw box score numbers to some interesting and funky advanced metrics. The goal is to present the numbers without too much opinion attached, leaving those debates for the comment section.

OK, let's get down to it. Here are this week's interesting digits:

The Raptors have a 14.1 net rating in their 30 wins (3rd in the NBA) and a -6.7 net rating in their 20 losses (first in NBA).

Put simply, they win big and lose small.

If you’ve been discouraged by their recent struggles, take solace in the fact that their 5.7 overall net rating still ranks them third in the entire Association, trailing only the Golden State Warriors (12.7) and the San Antonio Spurs (8.9).

Speaking of struggles, however, the Raptors have a record of 2-7 since January 18th, and their .222 win-loss percentage over that span ranks them 28th in the NBA.

The only teams that have been worse lately are the Milwaukee Bucks and Brooklyn Nets, which have both gone 1-7 during that period.

Over that nine-game span, the Raptors have ranked 25th in offensive rating (101.9), 13th in defensive rating (106.8), and 21st in net rating (-4.9).

Kyle Lowry was just named as a participant in this year’s Three-Point Contest, becoming only the second Raptor to ever compete in the shootout in back-to-back seasons.

The only other Raptor to take part in the contest in consecutive years was Jason Kapono, who won the whole thing in 2007-08, and then lost in the final round in 2008-09.

The only other participant that the Raptors have ever had in the shootout outside of Lowry and Kapono was Walt Williams, who was the team’s first ever participant in 1996-97.

Lowry is an extremely deserving contestant this year, as he currently ranks third in the NBA in three-pointers made (162) and seventh in three-point percentage (a career-best 42.7%).

Kyle Lowry is fourth in the Association in three-point percentage on pull-ups at 42.4% (minimum 1.5 attempts per contest).

That rate trails only C.J. McCollum (43.6%), Eric Gordon (43.0%), and Avery Bradley (42.6%).

Kyle Lowry is sixth in the NBA in value over replacement player (VORP) with a mark of 4.2.

The only players to best Lowry in VORP to this point in the season are Russell Westbrook (6.9), James Harden (5.6), Giannis Antetokounmpo (4.4), Kevin Durant (4.3), and LeBron James (4.3).

All stats courtesy of basketball-reference.com and NBA.com/stats.