1. Scottie Barnes could be an All-Star
Rajakovic and the Raptors haven’t been shy about their desire to lean into Barnes as a high-end playmaker and primary offensive option. Even in an offense that prioritizes moving the ball freely and getting everyone involved, Barnes was given enough autonomy to take charge of the offense.
The changes in Barnes’ game were evident, as he was using his size to bully people in the frontcourt. With 15 points, seven rebounds, four assists, and a +20 to his name against a very good team, Rajakovic showed how lethal Barnes can be as the top dog in this offense.
Scottie Barnes impressed on offense for the Toronto Raptors.
Even though Barnes missed both of his 3-pointers, he has much better mechanics than he did last year. While the shooting will come with time, the best way for him to score now is to use his bulk and athleticism to mash his way into the paint and put on a finishing clinic.
While Barnes will likely secede some responsibility to Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby (both of whom had their moments in this game) in the regular season, Toronto will give him every avenue to succeed. After one game, Barnes has shown off some exemplary plays.