The rest of the NBA missed out if they didn’t take a good look at what Toronto Raptors rookie Scottie Barnes was doing during his rookie season. On top of the fact that Barnes was the best rookie in his class, he brought with him incandescent energy both on and off the court.
Despite the fact that some Raptors fans were initially a bit skeptical about Barnes when he was taken No. 4 overall, his outgoing nature and gregariousness made him an instant fan favorite. Combine that with an exhilarating style of play on the court and you get someone that has all the makings of a future star.
The Raptors might not have made a very deep playoff run despite earning the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference and winning 48 games, but Barnes will be able to make his mark on the postseason in a different. It appears as if the NBA finally realized what a lightning rod he can be.
Barnes will appear at the league’s June 7 practice and Game 3 of the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics as a social media correspondent. 76ers standout Tyrese Maxey, who Barnes teamed with during All-Star weekend, did the same at Media day on Wednesday.
Toronto Raptors star Scottie Barnes is headed to the NBA Finals.
The NBA has typically dropped the ball when it comes to promoting some of their stars in Toronto, but they seem to be all in on the Barnes hype. After averaging 15.3 points per game and emerging as a standout performer for a playoff team, the Rookie of the Year has captivated Canadian audiences.
Seeing Barnes chop it up with Jayson Tatum and Steph Curry is going to be a fun sight for Raptors fans that are still upset at how quickly the team crashed out of the postseason. Barnes should have no trouble pulling one or two money quotes out of these guys.
Barnes has all of the ingredients that Toronto could’ve possibly asked for in their quest to find their next franchise player. On top of the fact that he was so dominant that teams already had to plan around his unique collection of skills as a rookie, he’s got the media savvy and personality to dominate the social landscape.
Hopefully, the Finals provide an opportunity for the rest of the NBA world to fall in love with Scottie as this fanbase has.