1. The small-ball lineup
- PG: Fred VanVleet
- SG: Gary Trent Jr.
- SF: OG Anunoby
- PF: Scottie Barnes
- C: Pascal Siakam
VanVleet is not a perfect player, but he has shown he can be a secondary scorer on this team and a quality point guard when he handles the ball. It’s time for him to make the switch full-time.
Assuming that the Raptors re-sign Trent and have him improve his defensive skills, this will be one of the best combinations in the NBA from a perimeter defense point of view.
With Trent and VanVleet in the backcourt, Barnes ready to move all around the floor and guard any one of the five positions, and Anunoby prepared to once again show he is one of the best defenders in the NBA, good luck trying to score against that bunch.
Will the Toronto Raptors play small with Scottie Barnes?
The big question in this lineup will be Siakam at center. The Raptors unveiled a smaller three-guard lineup last year with Siakam down low, Anunoby at power forward, and Norman Powell on the wing. While the lineup provided some temporary juice, the lack of size ultimately necessitated a change.
If the Raptors are able to supplement this combination’s minutes with some standout bench bodies who can provide rebounding and interior defense, this lineup will absolutely cook teams when Toronto wants to pick up the pace. If Barnes becomes a quality shooter on top of that, it’s game over.