Loyal Readers will recall I promised to compare Ross & Drummond several times during the season. Bryan Colangelo shocked the pundits on
Draft Night by passing on Drummond at #8 to select Ross. The Pistons recovered from their astonishment in time to quickly choose Drummond next, leaving us Raps fans to wonder whether Colangelo’s choice was brilliant contrarianism or severe misjudgement.
Since we’re just past the season’s quarter-pole, let’s check on the young men’s progress. Here are the raw stats:
Setting aside the anomalies (Andre is NOT a better 3-point shooter than Terrence – he’s tried two and made one) and funky extrapolations (Andre ranks third in the NBA in offensive rebounds per 48 minutes), we can see that the two players’ stats are surprising close. Even their ugliest stat is the same: free throw percentage. Andre, a huge man who plays close to the basket, has much better rebounding numbers and a higher field goal percentage, both of which are to be expected when comparing a power forward to a shooting guard.
Where they really differ is their usage patterns. Andre’s MPG [above] is a true reflection of how he’s been used all season. Terrence, by contrast, has seen his minutes increase dramatically. He has played 21+ minutes in five of his last eight games, compared to one game like that in his first eight. Injuries to Kyle Lowry, Landry Fields, Linas Kleiza and Alan Anderson have forced Coach Casey to trust his gifted rookie, and Ross has seized his opportunity by providing many steady minutes (including a few highly exciting ones).
Neither will be anywhere near the top of the voting for Rookie of the Year, as that award will go to Portland’s precocious guard Damian Lillard, barring an earthquake or serious injury. However, neither Ross nor Drummond is a disappointment to their teams, and both are making solid progress in their professional careers. We’ll check in with them later in the season.
Brian Boake is a staff writer for Raptors Rapture. “Like” Raptors Rapture on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @RaptorsRapture for all the latest news and updates about the best damn NBA team from Canada.