Let’s go ahead and give DeMarre Carroll a mulligan. Last season was the nightmare after the dream: The good vibes from his 2014–15 career year in Atlanta and the expectations that built with his cash-out contract with Toronto came crashing down thanks to a season-altering knee injury. The 30-year-old Carroll (11 PPG, 4.7 RPG) appeared in just 26 games and missed three solid months before rushing back for the playoffs. That was no way to build chemistry and trust with the Raptors’ existing core. While Carroll was gone, however, his basic skill-set only got more valuable. A complementary offensive option who plays to his strengths (outside shooting, cutting) and knows his role, Carroll can handle multiple positions on the defensive end and relishes the dirty work. Assuming he’s back to full health, Carroll should have every opportunity to reestablish himself with the Raptors. (Last year: No. 81)
+ Still grades out as an “Excellent” spot-up shooter (per Synergy Sports)
+ Although he wasn't 100% healthy, he helped Toronto make the East finals for the first time in franchise history
– Toronto’s best playoff-ready lineup might feature Carroll, Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, Cory Joseph and Valanciunas. That group logged just 36 minutes together last year.
– After a career year in 2014–15, he placed outside the top 100 in Player Efficiency Rating, Win Shares and Real Plus Minus last season