It’s been a little over a week since Raptors star forward Pascal Siakam was traded to the Indiana Pacers for Bruce Brown, Kira Lewis, Jordan Nwora, two 2024 first-round picks, and a conditional 2026 first-round pick. Just before that, OG Anunoby was traded to the Knicks for RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, and a 2024 second-round pick. The Raptors have embraced the rebuild for this season and now have a bevy of draft picks to build this team up again.
Now that the dust has settled on these trades, we think it’s time to look at how the Raptors have adjusted to losing their star players and at how the NBA betting market has reacted to Toronto pulling the plug on their 2023-24 campaign.
Raptors stats without Anunoby and Siakam
The Raptors have played 13 games since OG Anunoby was traded to the Knicks on December 30th and four games since Pascal Siakam was shipped out to Indianapolis. This means there is obviously a small sample size of data to work with, but it’s still worth looking at some of the trends that have and have not emerged since Anunoby and Siakam left Toronto.
The first and most obvious change is RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, Bruce Brown, Jordan Nwora, and Kira Lewis are playing for the Raptors while Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby are not. On paper, this makes the Raptors look like a radically different team than they were just over three weeks ago. When you look into the numbers though, Toronto hasn’t changed that much without Anunoby and Siakam.
The Raptors lost 127-129 to the lowly Detroit Pistons in their first game without Anunoby. This led many fans to fear the worst for the rest of Toronto’s season. However, the Raptors have been pretty average since that embarrassing loss to the league’s worst team.
Toronto’s record since trading Anunoby is 4-9. That’s a .308 record. Their record on the season is just .364. Throughout an entire 82-game schedule, that’s just four wins. In other words, not that different. The other numbers bear this out too.
The Raptors’ January effective field goal percentage, true shooting rate, and points per game are almost identical to the stats they put up in December. This is true for other metrics as well. The only noticeable dip is in steals. The Raptors averaged 7.2 per game in December and only averaged 6.5 in January.
Raptors to qualify for the Play-In Tournament
Siakam played for almost all of January though, so maybe this is an unfair comparison. How have the Raptors played without Anunoby and Siakam? Pretty much like they played before they left.
Yes, the Raptors have indeed lost three of the four games they’ve played without Siakam and Anunoby, but they were underdogs in three of those matches and the advanced numbers don’t look that dissimilar to when before the trades.
Toronto’s offensive rating in those four matches was 113.0. Their defensive rating in that same stretch was 116.7. Over the season as a whole, the Raptors have an offensive rating of 115.1 with a defensive rating of 117.1.
What does all this tell us? Well, for one, it tells us that the Raptors were bad before the trades and that they are a bad NBA team now. Secondly, these numbers tell us that Toronto Raptors President Masai Ujiri probably made the right decision to blow up the team when he did. The team was floundering, and it was time to look to the future. Adding more draft picks to help this roster be competitive a few years down the line is the best way forward.
Looking to the future is exactly what we’re going to do now.
Barrett, Barnes, and Quickley lead the new-look Raptors
Any one of the four draft picks the Raptors acquired in the Anunoby and Siakam trades could theoretically turn into the next global NBA superstar. For now, though, RJ Barrett is the shining jewel of this trade for the Raptors.
The 23-year-old Toronto native was playing significant minutes for the Knicks before he was traded to his hometown team. Barrett has picked up in Toronto right where he left off in New York. Barrett has started all 12 games he’s played for the Raptors so far. On average, Barrett is playing 33.4 minutes a night, four more than he did for the Knicks.
The Canadian-born Barrett was never quite able to put it all together to be a superstar in New York. However, he’s already had some great offensive outbursts with the Raptors and just needs to find some consistency.
Immanuel Quickley, who came from the Knicks with Barrett, has also immediately turned into a key player for the Raptors. The versatile guard did not start a single game in New York this season before he was traded. Since moving to Toronto, he has started 12 out of 12 possible games for the Raptors.
Scottie Barnes, who the Raptors drafted No. 4 overall in 2021, was already a key player for Toronto before they let go of Anunoby and Siakam, but he’s now become a bigger part of the Raptors’ offence. How he copes with this increased role will be something to look out for during the rest of the season. Barnes is the best chance the Raptors have at finding a real superstar on the current roster.
Raptors betting trends and season outlook
If you bet on the Raptors to win the 2024 NBA Finals, we can safely say that you lost your bet. That doesn’t mean you can’t make some money betting on the Raptors throughout the rest of the season though. Here are some trends we’ve noticed since the big Raptors’ trades that might help you out.
The Raptors have won just four of 13 matches against the spread since they traded away OG Anunoby to the Knicks. They’ve won three of their four matches against the spread since the Siakam trade on January 17. Toronto’s record ATS for the entire season is 20-23-1, so they are in a pretty big slump right now.
Toronto are also in a slump when it comes to their over/under record. For the season overall, the Raptors over/under record is 23-21-0. They have failed to hit the over in their last five matches. This could just be them regressing to the mean. Alternatively, it could be a sign of things to come without Siakam, as the Raptors have scored almost 10 points less per game in their four matches since the Siakam trade.
Speaking of things to come, let’s talk about futures bets. Bet365 has set the Raptors’ Regular Seasons Wins line at 30.5 wins. If their current win percentage holds, Toronto will finish the season with 30 wins. We wouldn’t normally trust this type of crude projection, especially since it ignores strength-of-schedule, but doing so makes sense in this case.
The numbers don’t reflect it yet, but the Anunoby and Siakam trades have made the Raptors worse. That being said, Toronto was already pretty bad when Anunoby and Siakam were still around. A reasonable person could be talked into wagering on the over or the under here, but our NBA betting experts say Under 30.5 wins @ -115 is the better bet given how much talent has walked out the door in the past month.
If you’re looking to make some Raptors player prop bets, we think Immanuel Quickley is your man. His points, assists, and rebounds per game are all up since he joined from the Knicks. Versatility is Quickley’s best attribute. He’s had over 10 assists in each of his last two games, and he’s flirted with a triple-double multiple times since joining the Raptors. We expect Quickley to rack up plenty of double-doubles before the season is done.
Barrett and Barnes are also good options for scoring props, but you have to keep in mind that these are both young, streaky players, so don’t expect them to put up big numbers every night. Case-in-point, Barnes has scored 10, 20, 31, 9, and 22 points in his last five games.
Raptors to finish under 30.5 wins