The Toronto Raptors left the 2023 NBA Draft with just one selection, but they made the most of it. Very few expected Kansas wing Gradey Dick to be available at No. 13 overall, and Toronto made sure they didn’t let the former Jayhawks star fall any further than he did.
What makes Dick such an enticing prospect is the fact that he is both a solid rim-runner with serviceable athleticism and an elite shooter in one package. For a Raptors team that looked absolutely lost half the time without their starters in the game, Dick will be a very welcome sight.
The young wing has big plans in the pros, as he further displayed in an introductory press conference full of platitudes that show just how badly he wants to win games. He also threw the fans a bone by confirming what number he would wear during his first NBA season.
Dick confirmed that he will wear No. 1 in the NBA. On top of the fact that he could not wear the same No. 4 he sported in college due to Scottie Barnes, Dick said that he wore No. 1 in high school and would like to return to that number. Let’s hope he plays better in this number than Will Barton.
NBA Rookie Numbers: Toronto Raptors SF Gradey Dick will wear No. 1
The No. 1 hasn’t been home to tons of terrific Raptors players in the last few seasons. In addition to Barton, the much-maligned Goran Dragic sported that number for a whole five games. Future bar trivia answers Armoni Brooks and Paul Watson (remember him?) also wore that number.
The only player that has worn No. 1 in their Raptors career for longer than two seasons has been Tracy McGrady, who sported it until his move to Orlando. If Dick ends up being as good as McGrady, the Raptors would be singing and dancing in the streets.
No matter what number he wears, the fact that Toronto managed to fill one of their most significant needs with a young player that is nowhere close to his athletic ceiling is precisely what the doctor ordered for this roster. Expect Dick’s jersey to start populating Scotiabank Arena if he starts hot.
The Raptors haven’t had very many lottery picks in the Masai Ujiri regime, but Barnes and Jakob Poeltl have both been major hits. Will Dick, Toronto’s new No. 1, follow in their footsteps?