The Toronto Raptors left their Summer League debut against the rival 76ers feeling good, as Dalano Banton helped pulverize Philadelphia on the back of a dominant second half. The same cheer was not found after their second game, as Toronto was thoroughly taken to school.
The Raptors were beaten 93-83 by the Chicago Bulls in a game that was nowhere near as close as that scoreline would indicate. After locking down the 76ers in their debut, Toronto looked out of sorts offensively and could not stop a nosebleed on the defensive side.
Losing these games may hurt, but the main goal of these exhibitions is to show how young players have progressed and identify which players are going to make the back end of the roster. That picture is starting to become more evident.
The Raptors can prepare for their Wednesday skirmish with the Jazz and Friday tussle with the Heat knowing that some of their Summer League rotation players have been playing very well in the last few days. However, as with any competition, there are some losers.
Dalano Banton impressed for the Toronto Raptors
Stock up: Dalano Banton
The Raptors are giving Banton every opportunity to prove that his offensive game has matured. After a promising start to Summer League life in the Philadelphia win, Banton proved that his newfound jumper will translate to NBA minutes.
Banton finished with 18 points on 6-15 shooting, hitting his first four shots from the field and nailing his first three 3-pointers. While Banton did cool off considerably in the second half and continued to show the turnover problems that have haunted him in the last few games, the aggression and quick trigger on offense is nice to see.
Stock up: Jeff Dowtin
Dowtin has been given starts in two Summer League games, and he’s made the most of him. His speed and willingness to get to the rim helped him earn a few contracts with Golden State and Orlando last year, and he’s doing everything possible to make Toronto’s final cut.
Dowtin ended the game with 16 points on 7-11 from the field in 26 minutes. With a pair of 3-pointers in his bag in addition to some very nice possessions orchestrating the offense, Dowtin is making a compelling case for a two-way or Exhibit 10 deal.
Toronto Raptors: David Johnson needs some work.
Stock down: David Johnson
Drafted just one pick after Banton, Johnson’s career is trending in the opposite direction. Not only did he have a tough offensive game in the Bulls loss, but Chicago was hunting him on tons of defensive possessions.
Johnson amassed just four points on 2-8 shooting and was a -24 in just 18 minutes of play. Summer League is looking like a re-run of last year, as his issues on both ends continue to pop up. Johnson needs to dominate in the next two games to solidify his status as a 2022-23 Raptor.