With roster questions still abounding, the Raptors have reportedly settled up with one of their latest new additions: Dalano Banton, the first homegrown player Toronto has ever selected in the NBA Draft. He’s due to sign a 2-year, $2.5 million deal, with a guaranteed first year, and a partial guarantee for the second.
Here’s the report, care of Blake Murphy (who has now even got the might Shams offering up the proper credit) at The Athletic:
Banton will get a full guarantee in year one and a partial on the second year.— Blake Murphy (@BlakeMurphyODC) August 14, 2021
Banton is represented by @danielponeman and Mike Naiditch of @beyond_am.
Would still expect ample 905 time for Banton but good for him to get a full NBA deal. https://t.co/EwwaBpjkn2
As opined, don’t necessarily expect the Raptors to hand the keys to the offense to Banton just yet, but it’s obvious if ever there was a team who could make something out of the 46th pick in the draft, it would be the Raptors. As the team’s third point guard — beyond Fred VanVleet and Malachi Flynn — we’ll likely see Banton spend most of his time running the Raptors 905 in the G League.
A reminder: the 21-year-old Banton is 6’9” and 204 pounds, with legit ball-handling and defensive skills, who fits right into Toronto’s latest ethos of drafting multi-skilled and long players. He played his college ball at Western Kentucky and Nebraska — and in his last year posted averages of 9.6 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 3.9 assists. Through three games in the Las Vegas Summer League with the Raptors, Banton has been making a few plays of note — finding guys on the move, getting out in transition, and also completing some fun chase-down blocks. Yes, it’s merely Summer League — but it’s not hard to squint and see what the Toronto braintrust sees with Banton.
What’s more, it will never not be amazing that Banton selected his number (45) based on the 45 Kipling bus. (Am I particularly hyped by this because I too used to take that bus home? Perhaps.) If nothing else, the Raptors should be thinking about how best to use that bit of awesome synergy. Who in Toronto is not rooting for this kid?