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DeMarre Carroll on Raptors: ‘A lot of guys didn’t trust each other’

DeMar DeRozan, DeMarre Carroll, Kyle Lowry, John Wall

Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan, center, holds the ball as he, forward DeMarre Carroll, second from left, and guard Kyle Lowry (7) call for a timeout after DeRozan grabbed a rebound when Washington Wizards guard John Wall, back center, missed two free throws in the second half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015, in Washington. The Raptors won 84-82. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)


Raptors president Masai Ujiri said his team needed a “culture reset.”

That meant a shift from relying on Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan isolations in favor of a more free-flowing offense. It could work and make Toronto a better team.

But DeMarre Carroll – whom the Raptors just traded to the Nets – has heard it before.

Carroll, via Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun:
“I wasn’t happy, my agent, we thought the style of ball was going to be different, it was going to be more team-oriented, but I guess it was still ISO, so I thought they would have moved me last year, but that didn’t happen.”

“They say they’re going to try something different, I would love to see it (work). It’s always good to do it,” he said, adding he believes they will start the season trying to stick to the new plan.

“But once adversity hits and stuff starts going wrong, guys are going to go back to ISO basketball, that’s how it is. You’ve got to trust it. It’s one of those things you’ve got to build, you’ve just got to trust each other. This year, I feel like a lot of guys didn’t trust each other and a lot of guys, they didn’t feel like other guys could produce or (be) given the opportunity, so there was a lot of lack of trust on our team, so that’s what hindered us from going (as far as they wanted to go).”

Carroll joined Toronto from the Hawks, who made sharing the ball a core tenet while building a 60-win team. Atlanta’s identity was built on unselfishness.

The Raptors are returning the same coach (Casey) and many of the same players, including Lowry and DeRozan. Pivoting with the same people is more difficult.

Again, maybe Toronto can do it. But Carroll’s skepticism is founded.