#8: Terrence Ross
With the eighth pick of the 2012 NBA draft the Toronto Raptors took Washington wing Terrence Ross.
The Raptors were looking for a scoring wing player to take some of the pressure off Andrea Bargnani and DeMar DeRozan and Coach Casey got the shooter he coveted in Ross. While he wasn’t expected to be taken until the end of the lottery, Ross was a major contributor at the offensive end of the floor and an improving shooter in Washington last year. Ross hit on 36.4 percent of his 319 three-point attempts in his two college seasons.
“A high basketball I.Q. and an NBA skill that you don’t have to wait to develop,” said Casey.
What gives Ross the edge over the other scoring wings still on the board is his aggressive defense, something that should put put him in Casey’s good graces sooner rather than later. Ross was able to average 1.3 steals and 0.9 blocks last season.
While Ross has good size and athleticism, he is more of a guard than forward and his acquisition will put more pressure on DeRozan to slide over to the small forward spot. Casey noted DeRozan has been adding strength since the season ended.
Ross is not expected to be ready to start as a rookie and Toronto will still be in the hunt to upgrade their talent heading into next season. However, that talent upgrade looks like it will be coming by way of trade and free agency.