Latest projections suggest a Raptors free agent is on track to be a star

The Toronto Raptors showed out well in ESPN's latest statistical projections for 2024 free agents, and one player is set to become a star.
Gary Trent Jr., Ochai Agbaji and Immanuel Quickley, Toronto Raptors
Gary Trent Jr., Ochai Agbaji and Immanuel Quickley, Toronto Raptors / Cole Burston/GettyImages
1 of 3

Any good basketball analysis combines subjective analysis with objective analysis. No statistical model can fully capture the value of a single player, but any NBA decision-maker trying to evaluate players purely from the "eye test" is throwing away valuable tools and likely to end up looking like a fool.

The Toronto Raptors hope to take a successful approach to evaluating players, and they have a good track record of doing so. They'll need to hope to strike such a note in free agency this summer as the franchise tries to remake the roster and form a new group around Scottie Barnes that is ready to climb the ladder in the Eastern Conference, be that this year or in the future.

One place to turn in the public sphere for an objective statistical model is ESPN's Kevin Pelton, one of the sharpest minds in the business and an expert at marrying the objective and subjective. He recently published his model's projections for the top 20 players in free agency, measured in estimated Wins Above Replacement over the next three seasons. Some free agents will sign for four years, many others for one or two, so three years is the sweet spot Pelton chose.

The 2024 free agent class boasts some stars

The names at the very top of the list will likely not surprise anyone. LeBron James, even at the age of 55, is the top free agent on the market according to Pelton's SCHOENE model (more seriously, he is 39 and will be 42 when a three-year contract would end. He never stops). Paul George is next, and Most Improved Player award winner Tyrese Maxey is third.

Next on the list? None other than Toronto Raptors point guard Immanuel Quickley.