Connect with us

Raptors star Scottie Barnes goes toe-to-toe with James Harden, NBA standouts in pick-up game

Raptors, Scottie Barnes, Tyrese Haliburton, James Harden

Scottie Barnes was expected to be a major project for the Toronto Raptors. Many expected the rookie to struggle out of the gate in terms of scoring. However, Barnes quickly emerged as one of the biggest threats on the team last season. His exploits last year helped him earn Rookie of the Year honors last year.

After an offseason of working on his game, it seems like Barnes is better than he’s ever been. The Raptors rookie joined assistant coach Rico Hines’ classic open runs recently. Notable players during the run were guys like Lakers big man Thomas Bryant, Pacers standout Tyrese Haliburton, and Sixers star James Harden. There were also a bunch of other Raptors in attendance, such as Malachi Flynn, Pascal Siakam, and Dalano Banton.

Out of all of the players in the pick-up games, though, Scottie Barnes was one of the most impressive. The reigning Rookie of the Year went toe-to-toe with Harden in the open run. In particular, the Raptors star flashed an much improved handle, as well as an increasing willingness to score the basketball. Here are some highlights, as well as the full video. (via Ballislife)

Scottie Barnes has already smashed the expectations many Raptors fans had for him last season. With a much more improved offensive game, it will be exciting to see how he performs for a team looking to make their mark in the postseason. Can Barnes justify Masai Ujiri’s steadfast decision to exclude him in any trade talks for Kevin Durant? Based on his performance here, he’s more than ready to do just that.