Obviously, we all know the importance of internal development to every team, including the Raptors.
There's a reason that rookies usually don't have a tremendous impact, there are a lot of skills that they still have to learn.
I read a paragraph in an article from Grantland that I found very intriguing:
Clearly, there is something to be said about the quality of training provided by different organizations."Player development" is crucial to NBA success. Progressive franchises nurture young players, systematically engineering improvement in their games; bad franchises do not. Theoretically, there are 30 talent incubators around the league, but the truth is far from that. The Spurs grabbed Danny Green from Cleveland's scrap heap and turned him into one of the best spot-up shooters on the planet. Meanwhile, perennially bad teams sit back and watch as lottery pick after lottery pick simply doesn't "pan out."
When most NBA fans think of Serge Ibaka, they think about a freakishly athletic shot-blocking defender. That description might be accurate, but it is also incomplete. He's also one of the league's most quickly improving players, incorrectly typecast and largely misunderstood. Ibaka has led the league in blocked shots each of the last two seasons, but only the biggest nerds are also aware of the following: During the 2012-13 season, 59 NBA players attempted at least 300 midrange shots. None made a higher percentage than Serge Ibaka.
I would agree that, for example, the Spurs are able to turn dedicated players into something that they couldn't become elsewhere. Beasley's resurgence this year is another example of that. And while there is something to be said about having veterans/stars on a team to set the right tone, a quality training staff is just as important.
I think some of MU's biggest moves came when he cleaned house early in the summer. The signing of quality training staff may be one of the most important moves in the NBA, and there's no cap on that side of the business.
I question whether Paul George or Kawhi Leonard would have become anything special if they'd been drafted by the Knicks or the Cavaliers.
I guess my point is that, with a quality in house staff and good role models on the team, the draft starts to look a lot deeper.