Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 2 weeks ago

Valanciunas is working with former NBA player Jack Sikma this offseason, the Toronto Sun reports.

Valanciunas has rededicated himself to eating healthier and honing his offensive skills with seven-time All-Star Sikma. Though he hasn't lost much weight, the Lithuanian center is noticeably toned. His playing time underwent a drastic decline in his third season even though he ranked second in field goal percentage (57 percent) among qualifiers. With Amir Johnson joining the Celtics, Valanciunas will battle Bismack Biyombo for precious center minutes, but given coach Dwane Casey's commitment to defense, Valanciunas appears destined for a similar treatment heading into the final year of his rookie contract.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 2 months ago

Valanciunas averaged 12.0 points (57% FG, 0% 3Pt, 79% FT), 8.7 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.4 steals, and 1.2 blocks in 26 minutes per game during 80 regular season games.

In four postseason games versus the Wizards Valanciunas contributed 11.3 points (50% FG, 0% 3Pt, 88% FT), 9.3 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.5 steals, and 0.3 blocks in 27 minutes per game. Raptors' GM Masai Ujiri said following their playoff elimination he believes Valanciunas can still be a force in the NBA, and it's possible he'll sign a contract extension as early as this offseason. If not, the 23-year-old center from Lithuania will become a restricted free agent in the summer of 2016.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 3 months ago

Valanciunas posted a double-double in Tuesday's loss to Washington with 15 points and 10 rebounds over 29 minutes. He added one assist, one steal, and one block in the contest.

Valanciunas had a bigger role Tuesday than he did in Game 1 where he played 24 minutes, but wasn't on the court for much of the fourth quarter or overtime. He got the most playing time among Toronto's front court players Tuesday and it paid off with a double-double. The minutes distribution for Toronto's big men tends to be unpredictable, which makes it difficult to tell if Valanciunas will get the same amount of playing time in Game 3

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 4 months ago

Valanciunas scored 21 points (9-13 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 3-5 FT) with nine rebounds in 36 minutes in the loss to the Nets on Friday.

Valanciunas was limited to 19 minutes in the win over Minnesota on Wednesday, but still scored 15 points. Over his last five games, he has averaged 15.6 points on 63.5 percent from the field with 8.2 rebounds.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 4 months ago

Valanciunas had 17 points (6-12 FG, 5-5 FT), 10 rebounds, two assists and one block in 27 minutes Sunday against the Knicks.

Valanciunas had a solid outing against a horrible Knicks frontcourt, and the double-double was his third in his last four outings. While he has played well as of late, the expectations for Valanciunas should still be kept in moderation, as he does have the potential to go out and put up unimpressive numbers.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 4 months ago

Valanciunas scored 15 points (7-9 FG, 1-2 FT) with 15 rebounds and a block in just 24 minutes during Wednesday's win over the Timberwolves.

Nik Pekovic was sidelined for Minnesota, and their other options in the middle weren't able to do much to stifle Valanciunas. Raptors coach Dwane Casey continues to sit him for defensive reasons when the opposition goes small, which limits his value and court time, but on a per-minute basis the young center's game has definitely taken another step forward this season.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 5 months ago

Valanciunas (paternity) returned after missing Friday's game due to the birth of his son. He finished Sunday's loss to the Trail Blazers with 14 points (7-7 FG), nine rebounds, one assist and a block in 22 minutes.

Valanciunas's shooting has been solid so far this month. In his past two games, he's shot a combined 11-for-13 and had a 26-point performance March 4.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 5 months ago

Valanciunas (paternity) is expected to play Sunday against Portland, the Toronto Sun reports.

Valanciunas missed Friday's game against the Heat after attending the birth of his son Thursday. Since he's not injured, all inclinations are that he'll assume his normal role in the starting lineup Sunday.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 5 months ago

Valanciunas will not play in Friday's game following the birth of his son Thursday, the Miami Herald's Joseph Goodman reports.

Amir Johnson, Patrick Patterson and Tyler Hansbrough should handle the bulk of the minutes in the frontcourt with Valanciunas out. Presumably he will be available for the Raptors' next game Sunday at home, but owners will want to check on that on the day of the game.

Jonas Valanciunas C TOR 5 months ago

Valanciunas scored 26 points (12-17 FG, 2-2 FT) with 11 rebounds and two blocks in 31 minutes during Wednesday's loss to the Cavaliers.

He seemed fired up for a big Eastern Conference battle, and Raptors coach Dwane Casey rewarded him with more fourth quarter minutes than Valanciunas typically sees. It's the young center's best performance since mid-January, but he'll need to start producing at this level more consistently if he wants to take his game to the next level.