NBA executive calls Raptors’ Scottie Barnes “most impactful” rookie

TORONTO, ON - MARCH 26: Scottie Barnes #4 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MARCH 26: Scottie Barnes #4 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images) /

The Toronto Raptors struck gold in the 2021 NBA Draft, as they managed to select Scottie Barnes with the No. 4 pick when everyone thought that Jalen Suggs was going to be the no-doubt pick. With Barnes making a charge at Rookie of the Year, anyone who doubted that pick has been silenced.

Barnes is averaging 15.4 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game this season. While Cavaliers standout Evan Mobley is thriving in Cleveland and Cade Cunningham is outscoring him with the lowly Detroit Pistons, the combination of Barnes’ skills and stats should help him get Rookie of the Year consideration.

Unfortunately, it looks like Barnes will be involved in a very tight race to the finish this season given all of the competition around him. Even with that coming into play, one executive thinks that Barnes is the clear-cut choice over Mobley.

An anonymous NBA executive told HoopsHype that he believes Barnes deserves Rookie of the Year over Mobley, citing the challenges that he has had to overcome this season and the multitude of roles he has taken on. He likely won’t be the only one who shares this belief.

Toronto Raptors: Executive likes Scottie Barnes for Rookie of the Year.

“The Raptors as a team have been battling injuries and lineup uncertainty all year long, but Scottie Barnes has been one of the few constants for them,” they said. “If impacting team success on the court is taken into account for the Rookie of the Year…Barnes has been the most impactful rookie in the NBA this year from start to finish.”

While team success is very rarely a deciding factor in the ROY race given how many of the top rooks end up on lousy teams, it has to be in play here. Cunningham might be running the show in Detroit, but are his numbers on a team that might earn the No. 1 overall pick worthy of All-Star consideration?

Mobley, who has missed the last few games due to an ankle sprain, is on a Cavaliers team that is starting to sink without Jarrett Allen on the floor. While this is crushing for one of the best young players in the game, Barnes has taken full advantage.

No matter what happens in the next few weeks, Toronto can take solace in the fact that they drafted a future franchise cornerstone at No. 4 overall. The fact that Barnes is a consistent starter on a playoff team tells you everything you need to know about his fit in Toronto.

Next. 1 prospect from every Final Four team Raptors could draft. dark