NBA Mock Draft: Raptors add backup center with Pistons pick from Knicks trade

The Raptors finally have a 2024 Draft Pick!

Toronto Raptors Media Day
Toronto Raptors Media Day / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
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While the main purpose of the Toronto Raptors' OG Anunoby trade was to acquire RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley from the New York Knicks, Masai Ujiri had to like the fact he was able to get some draft compensation for 2024, a year in which Toronto had previously traded away both of their prior picks.

With the first-round pick likely going to the San Antonio Spurs, Toronto managed to pick up a second-rounder that originally belonged to the Detroit Pistons. With the Pistons in possession of the league's worst record, the pick currently stands at No. 31 overall. Essentially, this can be treated like a late first-round pick.

The Raptors might decide to use that pick on a backup center that can provide depth behind Jakob Poeltl. With Christian Koloko having missed the entire season due to his respiratory illness and the status of recent two-way find Jontay Porter beyond this season still unknown, a center could be at the top of the priority list.

Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman has identified center as an area of need for the Raptors, and he tried to fix it in his latest two-round mock draft. With the No. 31 overall pick, Ujiri is selecting Marquette center Oso Ighodaro, a 6-11 defender who can rebound the ball quite well.

NBA Mock Draft: Oso Ighodaro could fit the Toronto Raptors well.

Ighodaro, who is averaging 13.0 points and 6.7 rebounds per game this season, is an unusual prospect. While his size, lack of shooting skill, and touch around the basket make him seem like a garden variety big man prospect, Marquette gets a lot of use out of him as a passer and ball-handler.

Ighodaro is one of the best passing big men in this class, which should fit in well on a team that forked over a ton of assets to get a passer like Poeltl. A four-year player with the Golden Eagles, Ighodaro has made 65% of his shots during his college career.

While he doesn't have the gaudiest raw steals and blocks totals, Ighodaro's interior defense is well-regarded. If Koloko's future is in peril due to his health, Ujiri might need to replace him as soon as possible with yet another experienced post player.

While he needs to add a few more bells and whistles on offense before he can be trusted in an NBA rotation, Ighodaro has shown more than enough in his collegiate time to warrant a pick by a team that has the patience to gradually work with him and beef up his overall talent.

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