DeMar DeRozan not pleased about late benching against Rockets
San Antonio Spurs leading scorer DeMar DeRozan did not see the floor for the final minutes of Monday’s loss to the Houston Rockets, and it did not sit too well with him.
“It’s always tough to take,” said DeRozan after being benched for the last 4:46 of the 109-107 loss, per Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News. “You want to be out there to compete. It definitely sucks when you’re not out there.”
Osborn also adds that the four-time All-Star sat on the end of the bench during that final stretch and appeared at times to be disengaged.
“He’s a competitive guy and he wanted to be out there and you can’t fault him for that,” teammate Rudy Gay said in DeRozan’s defense Wednesday. “Coach [Gregg Popovich] went in a different direction. No matter what, being a competitor, it’s not like you are looking down at your teammates or anything. He just wanted to be out there. And that’s what you want. It would be a problem if he didn’t want to be out there.”
DeRozan struggled on Monday against the Rockets, scoring a mere 12 points on 5-of-12 shooting and logging a team-high four turnovers. But he has been one of the most consistent Spurs all season, averaging 20.9 points and 4.7 assists per game, both tops on the team.
Popovich has notably benched DeRozan before, so it will be worth monitoring how the 30-year-old star responds to this latest one.