The Raptors decided to part ways with Dwane Casey on Friday, shocking NBA players and media members alike, as the longtime Toronto coach had just been named the Coach of the Year by his peers on Wednesday.
Upon hearing the news, Raptors guard Kyle Lowry, who has played the last six seasons under Casey, offered support for both his former head coach and Toronto's front office.
Via ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski:
Kyle Lowry on coach Dwane Casey to ESPN: "Case is one of the best coaches I've ever had. We didn't always see eye to eye, but he let me be me...He was huge for my growth as a man and an NBA player."- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 11, 2018
Kyle Lowry on decision to dismiss to Casey: "They made a decision -- and for me, as a leader in the organization -- it's my job to support the decision that (President) Masai (Ujiri) and GM Bobby (Webster) made." https://t.co/XPTTugUOdQ- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 11, 2018
Lowry was traded to the Raptors in 2012 after spending the first six seasons of his career with the Grizzlies (2006-09) and Rockets (2009-12). He became a four-time All-Star in Toronto, averaging 19.3 points, 6.7 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game from 2014-18.
Alongside DeMar DeRozan, Lowry has grown into a game-changing talent, leading the Raptors to five consecutive playoff berths, including an appearance in the 2016 Eastern Conference finals. Toronto earned the No. 1 seed in the East this past season, ultimately falling to the Cavaliers in the second round.
Lowry is under contract with the Raptors through the 2019-20 season. He will become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2020.