The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday that they had invited three free agents to training camp – one of which was small forward Chris Wright. But what do we know about him?
Out of the University of Dayton, Wright had a solid college career averaging double digits in points each of his four years and a career high 8.4 rebounds a game in his senior year.
Wright has one year of NBA experience coming in the 2011-12 season when he split time with the D-League and Golden State Warriors. He played in 24 contests and averaged 2.9 points and 1.9 rebounds in just 7.8 minutes per game.
He made scouts aware of his talents, however, in a game against San Antonio Spurs where he shot 11-of-14 from the field, good enough for 25 points in 46 minutes and added eight rebounds for good measure.
That explosiveness has earned Wright a shot at a place on a relatively weak Raptors bench. However, the wing position is fairly crowded at the moment with Rudy Gay, Demar DeRozan, Terrence Ross, Steve Novak and Landry Fields all ahead in the pecking order.
Perhaps Wright’s signing was to add to the equally weak inside presence that coach Dwayne Casey currently owns. His 6-foot-9 stature is big enough to compete at the power forward position, which may improve his chances of making the opening day roster.
What doesn’t help is that the Raptors currently have 17 players on their roster and must reduce that to 13 for their opening game of the season against the Boston Celtics on October 30.
Of the three additions, Wright’s chances of making the team are probably the hardest to call. Nobody can buy NBA experience and not every player can score double digits, let alone 25 in a game. However, it is the logjam at the small forward position that has Wright’s hopes in the balance.
Only time will tell, and with a full preseason schedule ahead anything can happen.