All the talk the past few days around Toronto has centered on Kyle Lowry, and for good reason. Every indication seemed to point to the end of his tenure with the organization where he spent nine years of his career, establishing himself as the greatest player in Raptors history.
That all came to naught at the trade deadline on Thursday, as the team opted to hang onto him through the rest of the season, but that doesn’t mean that the man who helped deliver the first championship in franchise history still couldn’t be on the move this summer.
A name that’s been somewhat lost in all of this is DeMar DeRozan, who was Lowry’s best friend and running for so many years in Toronto, but who’s been plying his own wares in San Antonio since the trade the brought Kawhi Leonard and a 2019 title. DeRozan’s star has faded some in recent years in the relative obscurity of the Spurs, but the former All-Star keeps reminding us that he has plenty left in the tank as he quietly puts up impressive numbers.
That sparked an interesting debate with the TNT crew on Thursday night, when Candace Parker argued that DeRozan would be a star in any era, while Shaq, unsurprisingly, took exception to that, trotting out the old yarn that he wouldn’t be tough enough to play in the ’90s.
Candace Parker “DeMar DeRozan would have been great in any other era”
Shaq “DeMar DeRozan couldn’t play in the 90s”
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) March 26, 2021
It’s a tired and totally expected response from Shaq, who also has a history of arguing point against Parker — the WNBA lgend took him to the woodshed over his lack of understanding of the modern pick-and-roll game earlier this season.
As far as DeRozan goes, it seems clear he would’ve thrived in the ’90s. His mid-range game would be well-suited to that era, and his prowess as an offensive player extends well beyond that. Plus, you know, he’s good at basketball, which is a thing that would work in any era of hoops.