Crafting the ideal Raptors 5-man starting lineup after the trade deadline

Should the Raptors look to make some moves?

Miami Heat v Toronto Raptors
Miami Heat v Toronto Raptors / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
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Point Guard: Scottie Barnes

Darko Rajakovic seemed to be willing and ready to let Barnes’ playmaking talents shine when he benched Dennis Schroder in a dominant win against the Washington Wizards. Barnes has averaged 24.1 points, 10.0 rebounds, and 7.1 assists per game in his last nine contests, showing the raw talent he has on display.

Why is Barnes on track to thrive as a point guard this year when he hasn't been able to adapt to that role previously? Perhaps it's his much-improved shooting, meaning that defenders need to take him seriously on the perimeter. Maybe his improved passing and playmaking make him a more natural fit,

The Toronto Raptors need to lean into Scottie Barnes at point guard.

The Raptors have given Barnes some more freedom in recent weeks, giving him the ability to hunt for mismatches. With his combination of creativity, physical talent, and motor, it will be easy for him to bully some of the smaller guards he will come into contact with.

Barnes is still coming into his own as a playmaker, and the Raptors need to be willing to ride out all the bumps that may come with him adapting to this role permanently. However, if the last few weeks are anything to go off, Barnes' talents in a Darko Rajakovic offense that encourages moving the ball and making extra passes will work just fine.

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