The Toronto Raptors have relied upon depth during the team's current 14-game win streak, including having undrafted rookie Terence Davis start in place of the injured Kyle Lowry in Saturday's win over the Brooklyn Nets.
Davis responded to just his second career start by posting 20 points with a team-high eight rebounds while playing 30:12 in the 119-118 victory.
“I just wanted the spacing, I think,” Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said of giving Davis the start. “He’s been shooting the ball really well and I just wanted the spacing out there. Along with him, I kind of consider Pat [McCaw] our backup point guard, and I kinda wanted him to be able to come in and sub for either him or Fred and go from there.”
Davis has been a key contributor in four February games, topping more than 25 minutes in four straight contests, while averaging 19.8 points, with a 60 per cent field goal rate and shooting 60.7 per cent on three-point tries.
Davis has slowly seen his role grow with the defending NBA champions and now sits 15th among rookies in points per game at 8.2, a number that seems likely to rise.
Terence Davis - Stats per game by Month
Davis, who wasn't named to the Rising Stars game at NBA All-Star Weekend, could find himself in the starting five again Monday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, depending on Lowry's status, as the Raptors look for their 15th straight win.
The Raptors sit second in the Eastern Conference this season despite dealing with several injuries, including stints without Pascal Siakam, Marc Gasol, Fred VanVleet, Serge Ibaka, Lowry and Norman Powell.
"At this point, I think we're experienced enough in that realm unfortunately," VanVleet said Saturday. "We've had a ton of guys out this year, so we don't really think about it, it's just more opportunity for a guy like Terence to get some starting minutes... so it's more opportunity and guys gotta step up and try to make the most out of the situation and find a way to get a win."
The 22-year-old Davis spent four seasons at Ole Miss before joining the Raptors, but never averaged more than 15.2 points per game in a season.
Raptors analyst Jack Armstrong told TSN Radio 1050 Toronto on Monday that he believes Davis would be selected in the first round if teams could re-draft the 2019 class.