Norman Powell is not only loved by Toronto Raptor fans, but also around the globe. Americans actually know who Powell is and that means something considering they didn’t know who Kyle Lowry or DeMar DeRozan were until three years ago. 45 players were drafted ahead of Norman Powell, but that didn’t stop his drive and determination. Norman dominated Summer League and the D-League. When the steady playing time came last season post all-star break he was sensational. In those 25 games, Powell played 23 MPG and averaged 9.6 PPG (shooting 46.6% from the field & 45.5% from 3), 3.4 RPG, 1.6 APG, 0.8 SPG, & 1 TPG.
This season Powell’s play has been up and down. Some games he has looked great and others he has struggled. His playing time has fluctuated greatly from game to game between single digit minutes to 30 minutes a night. It’s extremely difficult for a player to be successful in the NBA without a defined role. Powell doesn’t quit. He continues to put the work in.
Why is Norman so special?
In the first round of the playoffs last year Norman Powell sparked a run that brought the Raptors back from dead. Fans had left the Air Canada Centre. It was something simple as a steal that lead to a transition bucket. That energy he brought to the court that night was contagious. The Raptors ended up outscoring the Pacers 25-9 in the fourth quarter to win 102-99 in game five of the series.
Here comes the Pow
Coming into this season Norman Powell was expected to be relevant in fantasy. The thought was that if this guy was going to get 25 minutes every night he would have 12-team league value. His minutes this season have varied from 2 minutes to 35 minutes. Being unable to predict his minutes he didn’t have much fantasy value until now. With Terrence Ross gone Dwane Casey will have little choice but to play Norman Powell 25 minutes a night. If those minutes stay consistent he’s going to continue the trend of putting up nice numbers post all-star break and oh yeah be useful in fantasy.
What position is Norman Powell?
The Raptors have used Powell at shooting guard, small forward, and power forward this season. I know small ball has become fashionable around the NBA, but at 6’4” he probably shouldn’t be playing the four. However, he can surely play either of the wing positions. Yes, some of the larger small forwards in the NBA will be tough for Powell guard, but he’s a workhorse that will find his way to do his job.
Norm has been good so far in the first two games without Terrence Ross. In Tuesday’s loss against the Bulls, Powell put up 13 points on 50% shooting with 4 assists, 2 rebounds, and 2 steals in just over 18 minutes. On Wednesday’s win (YES WIN) against the Hornets, he put up 17 points on 41.7% shooting with 3 triples, 2 rebounds, and 3 steals. Powell is going to provide the Raptors and your fantasy team with scoring, threes and steals while rarely turnover the ball. Oh, and if DeMarre Carroll gets injured it will be the duo DeRozan and Powell exclusive show on the wing. Bruno Caboclo might think he will see minutes, but if he did he would be sadly mistaken.
Dwane Casey has held Norman Powell down for as long as he could. It’s time for Powell to be unleashed.
Rest of Season Projections
11.2 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.7 APG, 1.3 3PM, 1.2 SPG, FG 44%, FT 83%, 1.1 TPG