Should the Raptors give Isaac Bonga a shot in the rotation?
The Toronto Raptors have hit the skids recently, as they have won just three games out of their last ten. Though the bench has been the worst in the NBA in terms of scoring, players like Malachi Flynn and Isaac Bonga haven’t been given a ton of chances to help turn things around on the floor.
After two up-and-down seasons in Washington, Bonga signed with the Raptors and beat out Ish Wainright to secure one of the final roster spots. However, the German international has only played a handful of NBA minutes and received an assignment to Raptors 905 in the G League.
Bonga has looked more advanced than most G League players as he averaged 22.8 points and 9.3 rebounds per game in Mississauga this season. With Raptors 905 not playing until Saturday, Bonga and two-way player David Johnson were recalled before Toronto’s game against the Grizzlies in Memphis.
Should the Raptors take a gamble on Bonga and give him some rotation minutes? Toronto’s current bench unit hasn’t been giving them a ton of things to smile about, so why not try to mix things up?
Should the Toronto Raptors play Isaac Bonga?
While Bonga’s defense was impressive at times with the Wizards, he offered minimal on the offensive end. While the G League might not have the best defenders in the world, the fact that Bonga is making 55% of his shots and nearly 43% of his 3-pointers while attempting seven triples per game shows he is making some strides in that area.
Defense and switchability have been Bonga’s calling cards throughout his career, and those traits should fit in nicely on a Raptors team that is trying to stack their roster with as many similar players as possible. With his offensive improvements, Bonga wouldn’t be a liability on that end to the point where he is unplayable.
While injuries and attrition forced players like Yuta Watanabe into the lineup, the Japanese sensation played so well that he turned his two-way deal into a standard NBA contract. Bonga may not experience a similar jump, but he could carve out a nice little role for themselves.
Bonga used to be so bad on offense that teams were benching him despite the fact he’s a 6-8 wing with point guard handles and a high degree of defensive skill. If his scoring improvements in the G League translate to the NBA, Nick Nurse may need to roll the dice on him.