Casey ‘always concerned’ about DeRozan’s, Lowry’s minutes

Kyle Lowry discusses his appreciation towards fans for their NBA All-Star votes and his teammate DeMar DeRozan, who was lurking and listening in the background.

As their team’s two leading scorers and distributors, DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry carry a heavy load for the second-place Toronto Raptors.

They also play a lot of minutes.

DeRozan and Lowry average the fourth and sixth minutes per game, respectively, and despite how integral the duo is to the success of the Raptors, the amount they both log is a definite worry for coach Dwane Casey.

“Always concerned about the minutes,” Casey said on Sportsnet 590 The FAN’s Dean Blundell and Co. Tuesday. “Especially when Kyle gets up around past that 35-, 36-minute mark is concerning. DeMar I think is durable and can do it, but again, we’ve got to start getting some more players more minutes as we go on.”

Some suggestions the Raptors coach threw out included getting players like Cory Joseph and Terrence Ross increased burn, but Joseph is already playing a career-high average, and Ross is playing almost as much as he did when he was a starter.

As everything stands right now, it doesn’t seem feasible to reduce DeRozan and Lowry’s workload. Particularly with DeMarre Carroll out and the Raptors in the thick of a heated Eastern Conference race, sitting just three games back of the first-place Cleveland Cavaliers and only 1.5 games up on the third- and fourth-place Chicago Bulls and Atlanta Hawks.

There will be time for a little R&R when the league goes on break for all-star festivities. With 11 games left to play until then, there will be no down-time for Toronto’s two stars.