It's common practice after a game for players to peruse stat sheets in the locker room. In Toronto, though, that won't be happening from now on. Forward Rudy Gay has put a stop to it, via Mike Ganter of the Toronto Sun:
Gay sees the scoresheets as an unnecessary barrier to team unity or even a temptation to be more focussed on what is best for the individual as opposed to what is best for the team.
"We're not playing for stats," Gay said.
Gay said there was no incident or no moment that pushed him toward this decision but as a leader on this team, he felt it was just something that was best for the team.
"I wanted to just nip it in the [bud] before it became an issue," he said. "We come in here after losses, after wins and people are staring at those stat sheets, but that's not what we're about. We're a team and the stat that matters is the W."
It's not hard to see where Gay is coming from. He's trying to lead this Raptors team to the playoffs and he wants his teammates to be focused on team goals rather than individual ones. As a symbolic gesture, sure, this makes sense.
Stat sheets are distributed in every locker room, though, and they aren't exactly ruining chemistry throughout the league. Regardless of whether or not players look at their numbers immediately after the game, they will see them.
Gay is averaging 20.2 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists for the Raptors this season, but is shooting a career-low 38.1 percent from the field on a career-high 19.4 field goal attempts per game.
Toronto has won two games in a row and is 6-7 on the season, good enough for first place in the woeful Atlantic Division. The 3-10 Brooklyn Nets will visit Gay and the Raptors on Tuesday.