Assessing the Toronto Raptors Summer League roster and schedule

"This is the most talent the Raptors have had on their summer squad in years, and who knows, they could be a threat to win the whole darn thing".

Exactly three weeks ago the Boston Celtics won their record-breaking 18th NBA title over the Dallas Mavericks.

That seems like it happened a lifetime ago however as so much has occurred around the association since that historic title. The first-ever two-day NBA draft took place when the Raptors selected four fresh faces, free agency officially opened, and a couple of big-time trades materialized including franchise icon DeMar DeRozan being dealt to the Sacramento Kings.

Bada bing bada boom and all of a sudden the Raptors play basketball in less than a week.

With the likes of the California Classic and Salt Lake City showcase already underway, the Las Vegas Summer League gets things going this week on Friday, July 12, while Toronto starts their summer schedule a day later.

Raptors Summer League Schedule

vs. Oklahoma City Thunder Saturday, July 13, 8:30 p.m. EDT

vs. Denver Nuggets Sunday, July 14, 9:30 p.m. EDT

vs. Utah Jazz Wednesday, July 17, 5:00 p.m. EDT

vs. Miami Heat Friday, July 19, 9:00 p.m. EDT

*The Raptors will also have one extra game on July 20 or 21 depending on how they do*

Naturally, the Raps have also announced the 16 players that will represent the club in Vegas and they can be separated into three categories, the vets, the rooks, and the invites.

Let’s dive in.

Toronto Raptors full 2024 Summer League roster:

The Vets

Gradey Dick, Ochai Agbaji, Javon Freeman-Liberty, D.J. Carton

The roster is headlined by a couple of players who made an impact on the Raptors last season in Gradey Dick and Ochai Agbaji.

Both of these guys are in contention to start games for the Raptors in 2024-2025 and it will be interesting to see them with some self-creation opportunities in leadership roles in viva Las Vegas.

Guards Javon Freeman-Liberty and D.J. Carton will be transitioning into their second years with the club and will begin their fights for a roster spot. Freeman-Liberty’s contract is very lightly guaranteed and Carton is in on a two-way contract after only playing 35 total minutes with Toronto last season.

The Rooks

Branden Carlson, Ulrich Chomche, Jonathan Mogbo, Jamal Shead, Ja’Kobe Walter

There will also be a ton of intrigue in the Raptors four selections from the 2024 NBA draft, as well as an undrafted free agent they signed to a two-way contract.

It will be fascinating to see how Toronto’s first-round selection (19th overall) Ja’Kobe Walter looks on an NBA court. With Baylor last year he had a solid freshman season putting up 14.5 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 1.4 assists. While he was below 40 percent from the field and 35 percent from deep, he took a high degree of difficulty shots while getting to the charity stripe at a high clip (5.2 attempts per game).

The first-ever selection in the NBA’s new two-day draft format Jonathan Mogbo provides intrigue in his own right. He has the handle of a guard, the size of a forward, and the shooting of a throwback big. The Raptors have experience developing these types of lengthy forward players and it will be interesting to see how Mogbo looks making the jump from the West Coast Conference to the pro’s.

Before day two of the draft, the Raptors made a trade with the Kings where they picked up Davion Mitchell, Sasha Vezenkov and the 45th overall pick which they used on Jamal Shead. The 21-year-old had an accomplished collegiate career winning the Big 12 player of the year and Naismith Defensive Player of the Year awards last season with Houston. Like Mogbo, Shead was signed using the new second-round exception and should see minutes with the big club this season.

It seemed like after three picks the Raps draft would be complete before trading back into the second round for the 57th overall pick Ulrich Chomche. The centre became the first player to be selected out of the NBA Academy Africa program created by Raptors president Masai Ujiri, while being the youngest player in the class. He is yet to sign a contract and is a potential stash candidate for next season but he will get a chance throughout the next couple of weeks to showcase his skills.

Even after making four selections Canada’s team wasn’t done there, signing undrafted free agent Branden Carlson to a two-way contract. The seven-footer shot nearly 38 percent from deep on nearly five attempts per game for Utah Utes last season and should get plenty of run with the 905 in the upcoming campaign.

The Invites

Jamison Battle, Dylan Disu, Joseph Girard III, Quincy Guerrier, Omari Moore, Tylor Perry, Drew Timme

While most of the talk will be about the first nine players, Toronto has filled out their summer roster with some interesting names.

One is Omari Moore who is a shoo-in for the 905 after showing positive steps in Mississauga last season, especially defensively.

Along with Moore, Quincy Guerreier will most likely be heading to the Paramount Fine Foods Centre for next season. The Montreal, Quebec native signed an Exhibit-10 deal with the Raptors after averaging nearly ten points and six rebounds with Illinois last season.

The rest of the names were brought in on strictly Summer League deals including Drew Timme, who is currently playing for the Sacramento Kings in the California Classic. Timme played with the Wisconsin Herd in the G League last season where he averaged nine points and 6.3 rebounds. Fun fact, he is also Gonzaga’s all-time leading scorer.

Toronto also added some shooting in Joseph Girard III and Jamison Battle. Girard III reached the elite eight this past season with Clemson while shooting the lights out, hitting at a 41.3 percent clip from distance on over seven attempts per game.

Battle is a forward from Ohio State who has a proven track record of hitting the three-ball as well, converting 37 percent on nearly seven attempts per game throughout college.

Rounding out the roster is Dylan Disu and Tylor Perry. Disu took positive steps as a fifth-year senior at Texas while Perry is another under-six-foot Kansas State point guard the Raptors have interest in who put up good numbers as a senior.

All of these invites will have some runway to be a member of the Raptors organization moving forward, whether it’s with the big club or more likely the 905. Last year, however, we did see Mo Gueye who was brought in for just the summer initially get a two-way contract by year’s end and play NBA minutes.

This time of year is always fun as you get to see the youth of your team go out and play in different roles and contexts than you have seen from them previously. This is also the most talent the Raptors have had on their summer squad in years, and who knows, they could be a threat to win the whole darn thing.