The Toronto Raptors draft plan could change in an instant if a few polystyrene balls bounce in their favor, as they still have a solid chance of moving into the top five selections in the 2021 NBA Draft. This gives them a shot at one of the consensus top prospects in Cade Cunningham, Evan Mobley, Jalen Green, Jalen Suggs, and Jonathan Kuminga.
The Raptors are a bit of a puzzling team to draft for right now, as they don’t have the usual batch of holes that most teams drafting in the lottery have, putting them in an ideal place to draft someone a bit raw and allowing them to develop.
While any one of those top five prospects would be a solid selection for Toronto given their potential, that doesn’t mean that they are flawless prospects, as all five of them have flaws that could impede success in the pros.
Kuminga might be the prospect that the Raptors should have the most concerns about, as his explosiveness on the offensive end and potential must be qualified with the fact that he has some concerns that showed up on his G League film.
The Toronto Raptors might need to examine Jonathan Kuminga closely.
Kuminga is by no means a finished product, as he should be a senior in high school and reclassified to enter this draft class, but some of his numbers in the NBA G League didn’t exactly scream “future franchise cornerstone”, particularly as it related to his efficiency on offense.
Kuminga might’ve scored 15.8 points per game while pulling down 7.2 boards per game and showing off the boundless athleticism that will make your jaw hit the floor, but he made just 38.7% of his shots from the floor and 24.6% of his 3-point attempts. With defensive effort also coming and going, will need a ton of development time.
While the Raptors have been linked to some raw talents like Tennessee’s Keon Johnson in this draft, a player like Johnson, who plays in the backcourt, could be eased into more playing time due to Toronto’s depth at the position.
Kuminga, on the other hand, will be viewed by teams that like to play smaller, of which Toronto is one, as a power forward that needs to add weight, and Toronto might be forced into throwing him out for heavy minutes when his face-up game on offense needs a ton of work. Players like Mobley, Suggs, and even Green won’t face that challenge to such an extent.
Make no mistake, if Kuminga is there for the taking, the Raptors should take him. Prospects that can leap, pass, and blow by defenders like he can at this age don’t come along that often. However, the Raptors shouldn’t overlook the fact that he will be a huge developmental undertaking, and they could bypass him if they get an abnormally high selection.