Raptors 905 held their annual open tryouts Saturday, where hopefuls from across the GTA and beyond brought their all in hopes of landing a spot on the NBA G League team.
The talent this year was promising, as it was last year, and Raptors 905 general manager Dan Tolzman showed enthusiasm Saturday for the quality players who made it out.
“We’re pretty fortunate being in Toronto to where this city produces a pretty high level of local players,” Tolzman told the media. “Our talent pool is probably a bit richer than some other G League teams in terms of guys that qualify for this event.”
In addition to the possibility of making the team, the tryouts also give NBA hopefuls a chance to network and build a name for themselves.
Aaron Best was among the locals trying out at the Goldring Centre for High Performance Sport at University of Toronto’s St. George campus this year, and he says he wanted to take advantage of the opportunities the tryouts could bring.
“It’s nice that we have this opportunity here at home for guys that are local and for guys that are from the city,” Best said. “We have a great facility here and great facilities all over the city now, so we really have to take advantage of it when you can.”
The team had a successful season last year, ultimately becoming the NBA G League champions. That’s something that drew Richard Amard to try out on Saturday.
“The [team] definitely left a big mark by winning the NBA G League championship last year.” Amard said. “It’s just a good atmosphere to be around. I’m trying to make the most of this opportunity and continue to build on the success that I’ve been able to have.”
Beginning in the 2017-18 season, the D-League rebranded to the G League as part of a multi-year deal with Gatorade.
Raptors 905 hopes to continue to build on last year’s success with fresh blood, and that extends beyond the tryouts on Saturday.
“The league does a really good job of opening up the standards in terms of we can search nationally, globally whatever we can to try and find some guys that qualify,” Tolzman said. “We can look all around the country and see who’s out…