Planning Out The 2024 Draft For The Toronto Raptors

June 16th, 2024

by Alan Lu

The Toronto Raptors had their ups and downs this season, and they ended up finishing 25-57 and missing the playoffs. From a team standpoint, they had a fairly disappointing season in their first year in the post-Nick Nurse era, but it was not a huge shock because Nurse was a good coach that had helped them win the 2019 championship (though they also did have Kawhi Leonard, Kyle Lowry, Pascal Siakam, and VanVleet on that 2019 team as well), and they also lost Fred VanVleet in free agency to Houston, so Toronto was already kind of depleted to start the season. Also, they were competing in the competitive Eastern Conference, and as they stumbled out of the gates, the Raptors decided to trade Siakam away to Indiana as they have turned their focus for next season and beyond.

Scottie Barnes, Immanuel Quickley, and RJ Barrett will be the new core group of players that the Raptors will build around, which will likely have Raptors’ fans optimistic for the team’s future.
(Photo: Cole Burston/Getty Images, via Forbes)

They did have a strong, All-Star season out of Scottie Barnes, but the Raptors stumbled out of the gates, and they basically threw in the towel when they traded away their long-time star big man Pascal Siakam to Indiana, even though they were able to get defensive stalwart Bruce Brown that was on last year’s Denver Nuggets championship team, but Brown ended up struggling with his jump shot this year. In the meantime, they traded OG Anunoby to New York, but were able to land RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley in a trade, which gives them promise and hope for the future. In addition, while Gradey Dick struggled significantly early on, he started to find his shooting stroke in the second half of the season, which could give the Raptors’ fan base hope for next season.

It’s still left to be determined if Raptors head coach Darko Rajakovic has the coaching chops to be one of the best in this league, but one thing’s for sure: he is intense and fiery, and he will have his players’ back. Rajakovic gave arguably one of the most interesting press conferences of the year, as he ranted on officials all while praising his star player, Scottie Barnes.
(Source: X/@MikeAScotto)

For the Raptors, they need to help build their core around Scottie Barnes, RJ Barrett, and Immanuel Quickley. They could use an extra ball handler, a big man to man the paint, or more 3 and D wings.

So here is what I did for the Raptors in the ESPN’s 2024 NBA Mock Draft Simulator.

Test Simulation #1:

A mock draft board for the Toronto Raptors. Image courtesy of Fanspo.
A mock draft board for the Toronto Raptors. Image courtesy of ESPN Analytics.

Test Simulation #2:

A mock draft board for the Toronto Raptors. Second test simulation. Image courtesy of ESPN Analytics.
A mock draft board for the Toronto Raptors. Second test simulation. Image courtesy of ESPN Analytics.

Ware and Filipowski would be solid picks at 19, as they are agile, skilled big men that can add offensive versatility, and they could contribute right away and also help them in the long run. Scheierman is a versatile combo guard that can shoot and pass the basketball, and the Raptors could also use athletic forwards that could step into a 3 and D role at the NBA level. The 2024 NBA Draft will be held on June 26 and 27. Thanks for reading.

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