DeMarre Carroll is not moving on from the Toronto Raptors quietly.
Toronto agreed to trade the veteran forward, as well as a pair of 2018 draft picks, to the Brooklyn Nets in an apparent salary cap-shedding transaction. But before he heads off to The Empire State, Carroll shed some light on what he believes hurt the Raptors last season.
“But once adversity hits and stuff starts going wrong, guys are going to go back to ISO basketball, that’s how it is,” Carroll told The Toronto Sun. “You’ve got to trust it. It’s one of those things you’ve got to build, you’ve just got to trust each other. This year, I feel like a lot of guys didn’t trust each other and a lot of guys, they didn’t feel like other guys could produce or (be) given the opportunity, so there was a lot of lack of trust on our team, so that’s what hindered us from going (as far as they wanted to go).”
It’s no secret Toronto has heavily relied on its star players in recent seasons, as it’s fairly common to see either DeMar DeRozan or Kyle Lowry take over the offense.
The Raptors’ style of play was good enough to earn them the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference, but it didn’t produce a similar level of success in the playoffs. LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers had their way with Toronto in a second-round series to the tune of an overpowering sweep.
And it’s likely Toronto will lean on its backcourt in the upcoming season as well. DeRozan has made his case as one of the league’s most dynamic scorers, and the team was able to re-sign Lowry to a three-year, $100 million deal.
As it’s stands, it’s hard to imagine the Raptors overtaking the Cavs or Boston Celtics as one of the top teams in the East.
Thumbnail photo via Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports Images