Toronto Raptors all-time draft steal starting 5

Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, Toronto Raptors
Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, Toronto Raptors / Eric Espada/GettyImages
5 of 5

Center - Pascal Siakam, No. 27 pick in 2016

We already highlighted the good work the Toronto Raptors did in the 2016 NBA Draft, tracking Fred VanVleet and signing him to a Summer League deal when he went undrafted. That was hardly their only great move of draft night, however, as they also landed on an All-NBA player late in the First Round.

Pascal Siakam came to basketball late after fellow Cameroon native Luc Mbah a Moute discovered him at a basketball camp and helped him get to the United States and attend New Mexico State University. He played two seasons and became the Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year as a sophomore before declaring for the 2016 NBA Draft, where the Raptors selected him 27th overall.

Siakam took an interesting path to stardom, starting as a defensive specialist for the 2016-17 Raptors as a rookie, then moving back to the bench while his offensive game developed in year two. In his third season he broke out, starting for a championship team and winning the Most Improved Player award. He would go on to make two All-Star teams and two All-NBA teams, even garnering MVP votes in 2019-20.

The 6'8" Siakam is an incredibly versatile player, capable of scoring, playmaking, rebounding and defending multiple positions. Only Domantas Sabonis has more win shares among the 2016 draft class (VanVleet is third) and Siakam ranks third in total points, third in rebounds and third in assists. For the Raptors to snag him at 27th is one of the greatest steals in franchise history.

Next. The 12 Greatest Raptors in history, ranked by PER. The 12 Greatest Raptors in history, ranked by PER. dark