This upcoming NBA season could be one of the most unpredictable and intriguing in the history of the Toronto Raptors. This team did just lose Kyle Lowry and is coming off of an 11th place finish in the East, so a rebuild makes sense. Likewise, this team is full of holdovers from 2019, so a run at the postseason wouldn’t be crazy.
The Raptors are committed to player development and are moving forward with a young roster. It seems like most of Toronto’s top players won’t hear their names in trade rumors this year, and will be able to benefit from the added comfort of playing home games in Canada.
Something always went wrong for the Raptors last year. The roster was destroyed by injuries and COVID-19, and the team had to dance around questions about Lowry’s future. What if almost everything goes right this year? It happened for the Suns last year.
Even if the Raptors hit a wall in the playoffs, likely due to a team with championship aspirations like Brooklyn or Milwaukee, there are a lot of guys that could have the best season of their career. What will it look like if four of their star players all blossom at the same time?
Best case scenario for 4 Toronto Raptors players in 2021-22.
4. Gary Trent Jr.
I think Trent has the most room for improvement on the roster. At 6-5 with a career 39.3% 3-point percentage, he has the size and shooting ability to become one of the better young guards in the East.
He averaged 15.4 shots per game last season, but Nick Nurse might give him the green light to be even more aggressive on offense because Lowry is gone. This alone should bump his scoring average up by a few points.
Trent, who resigned with Toronto on a $54 million contract, shot 39.5% from the field and 35.5% from three last year. However, he scored 18.1 points per game in his first 10 contests before some injuries got the better of him. We’ve seen him score 44 points by himself, so it’s clear what a dynamic talent he can be.
Gary Trent Jr. should have the best scoring averages of his career
With everyone on the same page and invested, he will get the ball in places he’s comfortable with and raise those shooting percentages. Trent could be named Most Improved Player if the shots fall early. This is the first time in his career that he will be asked to be one of the main scoring options on a consistent basis.
Trent Jr. has an aura of confidence and style not dissimilar to LaMelo Ball. I’m hoping Nurse puts him in a position to show how good of a scorer he is. Ideally, he will get the opportunities that Norman Powell got last year, with a few iso plays called for him on the side. Making an All-Star team at some point in the next few years might not be outrageous.