Raptors high on Malachi
LAS VEGAS — Toronto has been taking a long look at Malachi Richardson this summer and they see progress.
Richardson, 22, was acquired from Sacramento for Bruno Caboclo last season and will be on the roster this season, so the team has been working closely with him.
“The Raptors organization is so hands-on, from the top to the bottom, they really focus on player development,” Richardson explained this week.
“So, it’s been a lot of hands-on, just working with me every day and I’m definitely appreciative of that and I just want to keep working, keep getting better.”
Richardson says he has cut down his body fat and improved his game overall.
A 35% three-point shooter while at Syracuse, Richardson has responded by nailing 46% of his attempts from beyond the arc at Summer League.
“He’s got some size and an ability to get shots off and he can make it, that’s a good ability,” Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said.
“He’s got so much polish around the edges to work on, but, he’s certainly showing the willingness … There’s a dozen, two dozen, three dozen little parts of the game where he needs polish and we’re going to polish it with him because he’s got the body and the stroke which is not easy to find.”
Richardson is not much of a defender (and you can’t blame the Syracuse zone for all of his issues there), but the team likes his upside.
“He’s a guy we finally got our hands on and put into our player development and you can see the growth, see the fit into the culture,” Raptors 905 head coach Jama Mahlalela said.
“He’s playing harder, giving more effort into the (defence), trying to become a more complete player. He’s got something to his game. He’s really interesting to me.”