When center Jonas Valanciunas is on the court the Toronto Raptors shoot five percentage points higher from three, they assist on a higher percentage of their shots, Toronto’s defense is a little better, its offense is 6.1 points per 100 possessions better when he is on the court. Most importantly the Raptors outscore opponents by 7.2 points per 100 possessions when he plays, but get outscored by 4.8 per 100 when he sits.
While there is a lot of noise in those early numbers, this much is clear — the Rockets are not the same without Valanciunas in the lineup, and according to an update from Yahoo’s Shams Charania he is going to be out a while.
Valanciunas is expected to miss approximately six weeks, league sources said.
Valanciunas averages 13.5 points and 9.8 rebounds a night, and he does it efficiently (a true shooting percentage of 60.6 percent). The Raptors don’t have anyone who can effectively replace him. Expect Bismack Biyombo to get more time, which will keep the Raptors playing good defense (he’s a better shot blocker), but their offense is going to take a hit without their Lithuanian big man in the paint.