3 rotation position battles the Raptors must watch in December

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Toronto Raptors, Dalano Banton

WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 03: Dalano Banton #45 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)

The Toronto Raptors have been leaning on their star scorers more than any team in the league this season, as they have the lowest-scoring bench in the league. Players like Dalano Banton, Yuta Watanabe, and Precious Achiuwa need to do their part and step up to take some of the pressure off.

The Raptors don’t have a ton of established shooters on their second unit, meaning that youngsters and veterans alike need to play a part in their bench resurgence. It could be the difference between making the postseason and another year spent waiting for the lottery ping pong balls.

With Toronto trying to sustain any hot streak that they may pick up in the next few weeks, the rotation is far from set. Nick Nurse could be forced to fiddle with his rotation if one player is not getting it done or one player is putting in consistent quality performances night in and night out.

The Raptors need to observe how these three position battles play out over the next few weeks. The coaching staff leaning on one particular player over the other could help Toronto pick up a few extra wins during the remainder of the season.

3 rotation battles Toronto Raptors fans should keep an eye on.

3. Backup Point Guard: Dalano Banton vs. Malachi Flynn

While Banton has been handed a steady diet of minutes early in his NBA career, Flynn may not be totally out of Nurse’s plans just yet. Due to some injuries, Flynn went from only playing in garbage time to getting 10 or minutes in five of his last seven games. The former first-round pick will try to push Banton for minutes as often as he can.

While Banton is continuing to provide his usual blend of hustle, defense, and speed, his scoring numbers have dipped recently. Unless Banton puts together multiple consecutive convincing offensive performances, Nurse will likely have Flynn ready to come off of the bench and relieve him.

Toronto Raptors rookie Dalano Banton has been more consistent.

Banton doesn’t have the most well-rounded offensive game at the moment, but that shouldn’t exclude him from chiming in on the fun. After all, Scottie Barnes went from a shooting liability to a legit weapon from deep. Perhaps Banton could be more productive with an increase in volume?

While Flynn has not hit the necessary developmental milestones that Toronto expected, he is still confident and willing to shoot it if he gets it. If Banton can pick up some of that aggressiveness, he should be able to hold onto the backup point guard job.

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