What will Raptors make of Malachi Flynn starring in Drew League?

Malachi Flynn remains one of the most curious evaluations on the Toronto Raptors. While it’s quite clear that Flynn has the talent and potential needed to become a long-term starter in the NBA, he has consistently underwhelmed whenever he has received NBA minutes.

Anytime Flynn is involved in an offseason competition like Summer League or a pro-am showcase, he proves multiple times over that he is far too good for that level. This year’s Drew League and CrawsOver runs were no exception, as Flynn stole the show.

Flynn made waves by scoring 73 points in a CrawsOver game. While this is undoubtedly impressive, more jaded Raptors fans will likely dismiss his efforts against players that are not professional quality. Just for good measure, or perhaps to stick it to those fans, Flynn went off again.

Flynn finished his Drew League game with 52 points and six rebounds while drilling eight 3-pointers. With inefficiency on offense being the main thing preventing the San Diego State product from becoming a consistent role player on this roster, Flynn looking confident on this circuit is what Toronto wants to see.

Toronto Raptors guard Malachi Flynn dominated the Drew League.

Of all the pro-am showcases that go on in any given Summer League, the Drew League has the most NBA cameos and backing from some of the biggest names in the sport. Flynn putting up numbers like that is extremely impressive, especially given how some proven pro players have performed.

While Flynn’s ability to cook defenders with his tight handles has always looked impressive on film, he hasn’t translated that talent to the NBA just yet. He is a career 38% shooter who has struggled to make himself the offensive threat he always looks like in the summer.

Considering the signing of Otto Porter Jr. and the fact that Nick Nurse had success with either Scottie Barnes or Pascal Siakam running the second unit as the backup point guard, Flynn faces long odds when it comes to wiggling into the rotation. Will a few exhibition games against amateurs change Nurse’s opinion?

The Raptors could have easily looked to trade Flynn in exchange for another veteran that can round out the bench, but they chose to hang on to him. If we’re to take that as a sign that Nurse has some big plans for him, 2022-23 might be the year Flynn finally proves he can stick in the NBA.