How good are the files Toronto Raptors? Have they improved this season? Where do you expect them to end up in the Eastern Conference?
Added: Otto Porter Jr.
At this point, you can pretty much sculpt your expectations for these Nick Nurse Raptors teams. They will be diverse, they will be strong and they will defend like crazy. The Pascal Siakam-Fred VanVleet duo should continue to perform at the All-Star level, rotating deep with useful NBA players. The key, though, is Scotty Barnes, and while the talented 21-year-old has wowed Uber in his rookie season and has an undeniably impressive cap, I’m not sure he’s quite ready to take on the mantle of “first star over competitor” in only his second season. The Raptors are going to be really tough, as they always are, but I think they’re another season away from really getting back into the Conference Finals competition.
The Raptors don’t have one of the five most talented teams in the East. But what they do have is a top-tier coach, a massive amount of height and a young star in Scotty Barnes who can take the next leap. Their wings are specifically designed to stifle elite wingers (as in Boston), and they’d be a strong team in the regular season due to their tendency to play on the open floor. We have questions about producing half the pitch to win a playoff series, but the rap has to be in the top 6 in the East again. The Top-4 is realistic for them if Barnes quickly takes another step.
Toronto should ride the Team Play-In line versus the Playoff team, but not because of their talent. If anything, they are one of the most underrated teams in the East. They haven’t done much to improve externally, but internal improvements will be there. I expect them to finish as a top six team, but rapid growth from the Cavs, Bulls or Hawks could replace that.
You can put the Raptors in place to play at least this year. All Nick Nurse does is win, and while he may be the most dangerous coach in the league he’s ever faced, he gets results. Toronto haven’t made many moves this season, but they’ve improved a bit, stealing Otto Porter from the defending champions. Much of the Raptors’ success this season will be determined by the sophomore jump of Scotty Barnes. If he maintains his production from last season, Toronto will still be tough. If he takes the next step, things may start to get scary in the north.
It all depends on how quickly Scotty Barnes develops. Could it be real No. 1 in Toronto? This would take them to a higher level this season because they have so many outstanding rotating players that any team would be happy to have on their side. They have height, defense and very few holes. I still see limited height this season, but they also have high ground.
Should the Raptors make a deal this year to get a star player?
Yes, unite some of these talents into a star
No, keep the cycle and let this group evolve
71 votes total
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