On the first night of the season, DeMar DeRozan dropped 40 points.
The Raptors need scoring and when DeRozan scores, the squad win’s.
Sure, DeRozan can improve at passing or be more efficient with his shot but two points shy of a career best, the NBA All-Star registered the best performance on opening-night by a Raptor in franchise history — Toronto registered a 109-91 win over the Detroit Pistons before a typical sellout crowd at the Air Canada Centre.
DeRozan only got to the free-throw line six times but his array of mid-range shots and drives to the rim were more than enough to keep the crowd on it’s feet and for the Raptors to register their first win of the season. To the delight of the fans, DeRozan started in his franchise-record eighth straight opening-night as a starter and was phenomenal, scoring 40 points on 27 attempts as the Raptors opened it up in the final 16 minutes of the game.
If anyone ever had doubt as to what the future face of the Raptors looked like, DeRozan eclipsed the franchise record for points in an opener — it was 39 by Vince Carter in 2003 — and joins Carter, Jonas Valanciunas (2016) and Alvin Robertson (1995) as the only players to score 30 or more for Toronto in a season-opening game.
Also setting the tone for Toronto, also with a monster night was Jonas Valanciunas who dominated the first half and contributed 31-points on the night in the Raptors first effort of the 2016/2017 NBA campaign.