Building Block: Scottie Barnes
Scottie Barnes is the most notable holdover from the previous era of Raptors basketball (if a team from a year ago can be considered a different era). He's not going anywhere, nor should he.
After an impressive first season that earned him Rookie of the Year accolades, Barnes had a more subdued sophomore season. His numbers were on par with his rookie campaign, but there was no leap seen. In fact, his scoring average was the exact same 15.3 points per game both years.
This is Barnes' team now, though, and he's taking charge in his third season. He's averaging career-highs across the board, including 20.4 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 5.6 assists per game. He's also one of the league leaders in both blocks and steals, as well as games and minutes played, showing just how useful he is at all times.
Barnes has shown his superstar potential since the trades. In the Thursday loss to the Chicago Bulls, Barnes had 31 points, seven rebounds, six assists, three blocks, and three steals. His career-high of 32 points will fall any day (although he had a bit of a stinker in the next game against the Knicks).
Barnes was envisioned as the future of Toronto when he was selected in the NBA draft lottery. With his club option for next year already exercised, the future is now for Barnes.