As announced last night by the Toronto Raptors, point guard Malachi Flynn, 22 years old and listed at 6’1” and 175 pounds, has been assigned to the Raptors 905 in the G League. The squad is currently a few days into their training camp and gearing up for a 15-game season starting on February 10th in the Orlando Bubble. Flynn joins fellow 2020 Raptors draft pick Jalen Harris and a host of other names — some new, some old.
The terminology is important here: Flynn, the 29th pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, is not being “sent down” to the G League. The Raptors 905 and the entire organization is quick to make that distinction. He is being assigned to the team. It’s worth mentioning this because, as we’ve seen with others on the Raptors, getting some extended minutes with the 905 is not an organizational punishment — it is in fact often an opportunity to learn and tangibly improve. Recent alumni like Fred VanVleet, fresh off a franchise-record 54 points, and All-Star Pascal Siakam can attest to this. We’ve also seen players like Chris Boucher and Stanley Johnson make the most of their time with the 905.
What this also suggests is a certain stability settling in with the Raptors roster. The team is still on relatively rocky ground — particularly with injuries flaring up as of late — but a more consistent eight to ten-man rotation has emerged in recent games. What this has meant for Flynn, as the team’s third point guard and, functionally speaking, the team’s 15th man, is far fewer minutes and far fewer chances to make any sort of real impact in a game. We’ve got every reason to believe the Raptors are still high on Flynn though. And what we’ve seen from him in games — his ability to take and make a plethora of different shots, including deep threes; his potentional as a pick-and-roll leader, etc. — indicates he could soon be a staple of the Raptors’ rotation.
But not yet. For now, Flynn will get to play starter’s minutes with the 905 and develop the skills the Raptors will need him to have when it’s time to take on a bigger minutes load in the NBA. All we can do now is watch and wait.