2014 NBA Draft: 5 First-Round Options for Toronto Raptors

2014 NBA Draft: 5 First-Round Options for Toronto Raptors

Toronto Raptors Draft
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After a successful and surprising season, the Toronto Raptors are headed for an offseason with a goal of bolstering their roster and improving depth. With the No. 20 pick, the Toronto Raptors have a chance to draft a very solid player, maybe even an elite player.

Here are some players the Raptors should consider in the first round of the upcoming draft.

5. Cleanthony Early

Cleanthony Early
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

5. Cleanthony Early

Cleanthony Early
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Cleanthony Early is a prototypical skilled small forward with athleticism and the ability to shoot long-range jumpers. Early is one of the oldest players in this draft. His experience makes him a player who can contribute for an NBA team right away. He can be a great backup for DeMar Derozan and Terrence Ross.

4. Elfrid Payton

Elfrid Payton copy
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

4. Elfrid Payton

Elfrid Payton
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

You might not know Elfrid Payton because he played for Louisiana-Lafayette. Had he played for big schools like Duke or Kentucky, he'd be in the lottery. Payton is an athletic point guard with size. If the Raptors let one of Vasquez or Lowry go, Payton can be a good value pick for the Raptors.

3. Jerami Grant

Jerami Grant
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3. Jerami Grant

Jerami Grant
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Jerami Grant has huge upside. Grant is a very raw offensive play. He really needs to work on improving his shooting ability. If he adds jumper to his game, he can be a lethal option at the three position with his elite length and athletic ability. He's another solid option to back DeMar DeRozan up.

2. Adreian Payne

Adreian Payne
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2. Adreian Payne

Adreian Payne
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Adreian Payne maybe the best stretch power forward in this draft. NBA teams love big men who can defend and shoot from outside. Payne might be a better version of Patrick Patterson. He can certainly defend better than Patterson. His upside might be limited given his age, but he can come in and play meaningful minutes right away for a lot of NBA teams.

1. Rodney Hood

Rodney Hood copy
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

1. Rodney Hood

Rodney Hood
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Rodney Hood is a shooter who has great size for his position. His ability to shoot the ball and stretch the floor makes him an intriguing prospect. The Raptors can use a shooter who can space the floor. Hood might be effective as a stretch four as well.

Ray Kim is a basketball writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @RealRayKim. Email him at raykim@thesidelinesports.com

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