4 Raptors who failed to meet expectations amidst dismal season

Darko Rajaković, Toronto Raptors
Darko Rajaković, Toronto Raptors / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
1 of 4

Depending on where you looked for preseason win lines, the Toronto Raptors were expected to win between 35 and 38 games heading into the 2023-24 season. Some models that factored in things like opponent shooting due for regression were even more bullish; Kevin Pelton's model at ESPN projected 42.7 wins on average for the Raptors, placing them right in the middle of the Play-In Tournament.

The season certainly did not play out that way, with the Raptors playing at a much lower level to start the season and finally deciding to break up their remaining veteran core ahead of the Trade Deadline. Injuries struck down the stretch to further depress their win total, and they ended the year at just 25-57. To say the season was a disappointment would be a significant understatement.

The organization as a whole failed to meet expectations, and while some of that blame is spread throughout the entire franchise, a few individuals stand out as performing well below the line expected of them. Let's look at four Raptors in particular who failed to deliver this season.

No. 4: Jalen McDaniels

The Toronto Raptors were not active in free agency last summer, letting Fred VanVleet walk to the Houston Rockets and replacing him with Dennis Schroder; otherwise, their biggest splash was adding Jalen McDaniels to play a bench role as a 3-and-D wing.

Unfortunately for his career and the Raptors' success, McDaniels didn't bring much of either this year. He shot just 16.9 percent from deep, the worst mark in the entire NBA among players who attempted at least 70 3-pointers this season. He had a high turnover rate, couldn't create and offense for himself and outside of some active hands in passing lanes was easily blown by on defense.

McDaniels played so poorly he was excised from the rotation until injuries yanked him back in after the Trade Deadline. It's unlikely he'll start next season in the rotation and will have to completely reset how he is viewed after such a dismal season.