The Toronto Raptors have a subpar 9-11 record through 20 games this season. There are many questions about the team’s future and which direction they will take.
One of the main bright spots so far this season has been the growth and development of Scottie Barnes.
Barnes has had an outstanding start to his third year in the NBA and has put up some impressive numbers.
For the season Barnes is averaging 19.6 points, 9.1 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.3 blocks. He’s doing this on a 46.6 percent from the field and a career-high 38.2 percent from three.
Barnes has been a jack of all trades and he is active all over the court. As a result Barnes finds himself in some truly elite company early on this season:
Barnes recording 300+ points, 150+ rebounds, 100+ assists and 20+ steals shows how versatile he is. The fact that Barnes is on the same list as superstar talents like LeBron James, Nikola Jokic and Luka Doncic shows how far he has come.
LeBron James and Nikola Jokic are multiple-time MVP winners and Doncic may be in line to win one soon.
It’s remarkable how much Barnes’ game has evolved. He had a very disappointing sophomore season and there were people concerned that Barnes wouldn’t be able to get back to his stellar play. However, he has hit the ground running and is taking a huge third year leap as the NBA world is starting to take notice.
Raptors have their building block
With Barnes putting up these type of numbers, it’s becoming clear that the Raptors have their next star to build around.
One of the things Barnes has to work on is putting it together for all four quarter. Many times Barnes has started slow this season and then his intensity picks up in the second-half. If Barnes can apply himself for the entire game, there’s no telling how good he can become.
As Kevin Durant said following the Raptors win over the Phoenix Suns, “the sky’s the limit” for him.
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