The Raptors’ pre-draft workouts continue today, with another six players visiting the BioSteel Centre in the hopes of hearing their name called on June 22 at the NBA Draft. The Raptors, of course, have the 23rd pick and are, as every team does (we assume), doing their due diligence on potential players to bring into the organization.
That being said, it feels distinctly unlikely that any of today’s sextet of players will be selected so high in the draft. That’s not to say they aren’t talented in their way, but the regard they’ve each been assigned feels lower (by which I mean, higher) than the Raps’ spot in the picking order. Except in one key metric: there are some stupendous names on hand today.
Here is the astounding list:
Nate Britt, Guard, 6-1, UNC
Scoochie Smith, Guard, 6-2, Dayton
Damyean Dotson, Guard, 6-5, Houston
Antonius Cleveland, Forward, 6-6, Southeast Missouri
Caleb Swanigan, Forward, 6-8, Purdue
Austin Nichols, Forward, 6-9, Virginia
Where do we even begin here? Sure, fine, let’s get the discussion of rank out of the way. As per our friends at Draft Express, Swanigan is today’s top ranked prospect. He’s in the top 100 at number 34. Then we have Dotson (we’ve got a Dotson here) at number 64. And finally, Nichols bringing up the rear, hanging in at 99.
For the record, Swanigan is a big 6’9”, 250 lbs, and listed as a PF/C. Is he jacking up over two threes a game? Of course he is! (He averaged 2.4 attempts last season, and shot 44.7 percent from deep.) Also of note are his relatively high assist numbers — 3.0 per game — for a big man, and an overall shooting percentage of 54.8 percent. The man from Purdue has some skills, is my point.
But now, again, the important stuff — those names! Nate Britt and Austin Nichols aren’t giving us much, but whoever had the bright idea to bring in a Scoochie, a Damyean, and an Antonius Cleveland (which is a name right out a righteous 70s film), should be commended. Even the top ranked Swanigan has a certain ring to it, adjacent as it is to swag-ian. I can’t even pick a favourite here. What a group.
Anyway, the draft is June 22nd and none of these guys will be picked by the Raptors.