DeMarre Carroll will be out indefinitely with a bruised right knee according to the Toronto Raptors official press release. There is no word on what caused the injury or when it was sustained. Not that knowing what happened and when helps the Raptors or their fans.
Carroll was the Raptors big free agent acquisition this summer for the Dinosaurs. He was averaging just 12.2 points and 5.1 boards per contest, and surprisingly, hasn’t had the impact on the defense that was expected of him. In fact, Toronto’s defensive rating with him on the court, 103.0 is 6.3 points higher than when he’s on the bench.
Of course, there is nuance to such stats, and you can only make so much of them. And typically, when a player is fitting in with a new group it can take time to adapt. Add that in with the plantar fascitis he was battling through the early part of the season, and it’s not just making excuses for his play.
If nothing else, this will be a speed bump to that. Whatever the on/off numbers say, this hurts.
Compounding the problem is that Carroll is not the only starter missing time. Jonas Valanciunas has been out with a broken hand and isn’t expected back until early January, based on initial reports. While guys like Luis Scola, Bebe Nogueira and Bismarck Biyombo have been stepping up in his absence. Still, there’s only so much you can lose before a team starts to feel the pain, so the absence of Carroll is going to hurt.