3 Draft gems just waiting for the Raptors to mine them

The Toronto Raptors have a history of uncovering gems in the NBA Draft. Can they do so again in the 2024 draft this year?
Tristan Da Silva, Colorado
Tristan Da Silva, Colorado / Mitchell Layton/GettyImages
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No. 1: Tristan Da Silva, Colorado

Heading into the 2023-24 college basketball season, Tristan Da Silva was well outside of first-round consideration as an old player with below-average athleticism, the kind of guy who would hang around the G League if he tried to make an NBA push.

Then Da Silva had an excellent season for Colorado this year and showed off an NBA skillset that has propelled him up draft boards. Shooters with size are always coveted in the NBA, and Silva has a smooth 3-point shot that should immediately translate.

What sets Da Silva apart is that he is not only a shooter but also one of the draft's best passers, which opens up a plethora of ways the Raptors could deploy him. The Philadelphia 76ers thrived using Nic Batum as an entry passer and secondary playmaker this season, and Da Silva could do something similar in Toronto.

Da Silva should also be a good defender at the NBA level, although his lack of athleticism means he likely won't be an elite rim protector or plus rebounder. The ways he can fit in, however, could make him the perfect player to target when the Raptors come on the board with the 19th pick.

Any of these players could be the latest gem to uncover in this year's draft.

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