Raptors insider hints at Dalano Banton returning in 2023-24

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 07: Dalano Banton #45 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 07: Dalano Banton #45 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The Toronto Raptors are in a position to change their entire roster this offseason, as the lack of consistency and skill off the bench has made them much less viable as a postseason contender. Dalano Banton was one of the main reasons the bench was often threadbare.

Banton, a Toronto native who was picked in the second round of the 2021 NBA Draft, has fallen off a bit since his rookie season. While he was an occasional bench player who impressed with his effort in his first season, he has failed to take the requisite steps forward as a scorer this season.

Banton’s performance has prompted many to assume that his time in Toronto is coming to an end due to the Raptors’ pursuit of a completely remade roster by the end of the offseason. However, according to some recent buzz, the Raptors may end up giving Banton one more go around.

Doug Smith of the Toronto Star “can’t imagine teams will be beating down the doors” to sign Banton. Smith said the Raptors are still intrigued by his talent and will likely look to bring him back on a contract similar to what he has now. Fans of the Rexdale product can rejoice.

Will Dalano Banton return to the Toronto Raptors?

Banton is a much better offensive player in the G League than he is in the pros, as he displays more natural aggression and confidence. However, his 14-game stint in Mississauga this season was not overly impressive, as his numbers fell off when compared to the prior season.

Banton averaged a solid 18.9 points per game (down from 24.1 last year), but his shooting percentages fell from 51% to 44% overall and his 3-point success rate slid from 39% to a pathetic 26% this season. If the shooting still isn’t there, one wonders if it will ever develop.

Even with all of the rumors surrounding a potential Nick Nurse departure, Masai Ujiri will likely stay committed to a style of basketball that emphasizes switchability. As long as that key tenant of the team remains in place, Banton will likely have a spot saved for him on the roster.

The promising play of Jeff Dowtin and the likelihood of Toronto using their first-round draft pick on a guard makes it improbable that Banton ends up as a rotation player in his third season. Still, Toronto is very loyal to players they drafted, and they will likely give him every opportunity to succeed.

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