Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade—who was voted to his 10th career All-Star Game in 2014—said via Twitter he has "no doubt" Toronto Raptors 24-year-old swingman DeMar DeRozan deserves to be an All-Star.
(No Doubt in my mind. Him and a few others)ThatDudeMcfIy: @DwyaneWade does DeRozan deserve to be an all-star ?”— THREE (@DwyaneWade) January 27, 2014
While D-Wade has missed 13 games over the course of the 2013-14 campaign in order to rest his sore knees for an inevitable playoff run, DeRozan has played all 43 games for the Raps. He is, however, expected to miss Monday's contest against the Brooklyn Nets due to a sprained left foot/ankle, per Raptors Media Relations:
With news that he will miss his first game of the 2013-14 season Monday, Raptors radio analyst Eric Smith pointed out via Twitter exactly how durable the youngster has been throughout his four-and-a-half year career:
DeRozan is enjoying a career-best season by averaging 21.8 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.5 blocks. All of those numbers are career highs, and the USC product is one of just 17 NBA players averaging 20 points per game.
Wade, meanwhile, is averaging 18.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.7 assists.
Most recently, DeRozan's breakout year was highlighted by a 40-point outburst in a win over the Dallas Mavericks (that performance was also a career high).
While his individual success has been eye-opening, Toronto's propensity to win games has been even more impressive. At 22-21, the Raptors hold the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference.
The 24-year-old is certainly deserving of All-Star consideration, and backing from one of his All-Star peers may help DeRozan earn the honor for the first time in his career.