HoopsHype DeMar DeRozan rumors
He has emerged from that difficult apprenticeship, those seasons of losing and those doubts that had to sneak into his mind as a better player and a better man. And with refreshing honesty, DeRozan fully admits that the criticism he and the Toronto Raptors have taken in the past half-decade has driven him to become the person he is. “You know some guys say they don’t pay any attention to what negative is being said of this, that? I do,” he said in a wide-ranging interview. “I know it’s there. “I’m not one of those naïve players who don’t know. I read a lot of stuff just to see. I use it as motivation in many ways. From a team aspect to an individual aspect … I think that helps me a lot.” Toronto Star
Yet he approaches the first playoff game of his life as if he’s been doing it forever, entirely confident, not at all intimidated and fully accepting of what’s to come when the Toronto Raptors face the Brooklyn Nets at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday afternoon. He’s heard the chatter and read the stories and been told the tales about how different it will be, how much more intense it will be, how some think he might cower from it. And he laughs. “I mean, it ain’t like it’s rocket science,” he said Thursday afternoon. “Everybody keeps talking to me like . . . it’s rocket science or I’ve got to know trigonometry or something. You just figure it out. You just go out there. “I’ve been playing this game long enough, I’ve been in the league long enough, been in a lot of situations. So it shouldn’t be hard.” Toronto Star
With their 102-98 win over the host Bucks Saturday night, the Raptors have now posted 21 road wins with two more remaining on the schedule. The latest wasn’t easy, not decided until the very end as Milwaukee refused to go away, a testament to head coach Larry Drew and his players. It was also a testament to Toronto’s lack of focus in playing a first half head coach Dwane Casey would refer to as “crap.’’ DeMar DeRozan sealed it with 9.9 seconds left, making both of his free throws on a night when the Raptors made their shots from the stripe down the stretch. Toronto Sun
DeMar DeRozan, frustrated after a no-call on a drive to the basket, kicks the ball away from the referee and gets T’d up Sunday in a game against the Suns. beyondthebuzzer.com
Kevin Pelton: Past dunk contest runner-up DeMar DeRozan admits teammate/defending champ Terrence Ross is the better dunker "by far." Twitter @kpelton
Reigning champion Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers and DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors, both All-Stars for the first time this year, headline the list of participants for the 2014 Taco Bell® Skills Challenge (#TacoBellSkills), taking place during State Farm® All-Star Saturday Night (#StateFarmSaturday), at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans on Saturday, Feb. 15. Lillard, the 2012-13 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, also is participating in the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest and Sprite Slam Dunk, becoming the first player to appear in three events during State Farm All-Star Saturday Night. He also is participating in the 2014 BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge on Feb. 14, and the 2014 NBA All-Star Game on Feb. 16. NBA.com
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