TORONTO – In his first ever NBA pre-season, ahead Gradey Dick promised himself to place in lengthy hours on the Toronto Raptors’ coaching services and do no matter his coaches requested of him.
That dedication shortly paid dividends because it led to him showing in a music video with well-known Toronto rapper Drake.
Dick had returned to the OVO Athletic Centre, the Raptors facility in downtown Toronto, after the staff’s coaching camp in Vancouver. as a result of he had left some issues in his locker.
“I simply noticed folks working round with cameras and I used to be like ‘what’s happening?’” mentioned the 19-year-old Dick on Thursday after follow. “It was Drake filming a video along with his son.
“I had plans to fulfill Drake when he got here again to Toronto however we occurred to only be there randomly however he was like ‘hey, why don’t you hop in for a bit of cameo?’”
Though Drake is within the video, it’s really a music by his six-year-old son Adonis known as “My Man Freestyle.” Dick, Adonis, and Drake all sit alongside one another at a information convention podium as Adonis raps
Dick’s whirlwind foray into the world of hip-hop occurred so shortly his new teammates didn’t even have time to react to his distinctly Toronto expertise of assembly Drake.
“It was so random that nobody actually knew what was occurring,” laughed Dick.
Apart from rubbing elbows with native celebrities and their kin, Dick is making an attempt to rise up to hurry with the NBA’s tempo. Dick was drafted by Toronto within the first spherical, thirteenth total, after averaging 14.1 factors, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.7 assists in 36 NCAA video games with Kansas final season.
“I believe the schedule right here calls for lots extra as a result of, clearly, in school there’s extra to juggle,” mentioned Dick. “Right here it’s simply follow, get your work in, after which you will have all day to essentially type of make the most of in your benefit whether or not that’s watch extra movie, sit down with coach, it’s simply much more is requested of you.”
Added Dick with fun “Simply no homework.”
Level guard Dennis Schroeder, who signed with Toronto as a free agent within the low season, mentioned that Dick continues to be “a bit of hectic” when he performs, however that he’s an excellent man and already exhibiting his professionalism.
“Nonetheless looking for his methods,” mentioned Schroeder. “However I believe we’ve received an excellent group of fellows who’re guiding him and making an attempt to show him and hopefully he’s going to embrace that function and get higher each single day.
“However I imply, once I was at 18, 19 and got here (to the NBA) I used to be just one velocity too. So, I imply, that’s the method. You’ve received to undergo it and he’s gonna get it.”
Toronto hosts the Washington Wizards at Scotiabank Enviornment on Friday of their remaining sport of the pre-season. Raptors head coach Darko Rajakovic mentioned he’s on the lookout for his staff to maintain flowing on offence.
“I believe it’s going be essential for us on this final sport to proceed constructing our habits in transition,” mentioned Rajakovic on the OVO Centre. “I believe we’re doing a a lot better job of attending to excessive corners, opening up the ground for one another.
“I believe within the half court docket, (we’re on the lookout for) decisiveness and aggressiveness of going downhill and studying the sport from there, having the ability to discover layups or discovering the extensive open man from there.”
DEFLECTIONS — Rajakovic has mentioned all through the pre-season that he needs Toronto to be disruptive on defence. Deflecting photographs and passes is essentially the most quantifiable reflection of that method. He famous that the Raptors surpassed their purpose of 32 deflections in a 106-102 victory in Chicago on Tuesday.
“We had 37 deflections within the sport and that’s one thing we’re focusing a variety of effort (on), watching video, doing drills so we will proceed to construct on that,” mentioned Rajakovic.
INJURIES — Centre Jakob Poeltl is anticipated to be accessible to play for Toronto in opposition to Washington on Friday. He has not performed or practised for days resulting from an sickness. Forwards Otto Porter Jr. (toe) and Valuable Achiuwa (groin) practised with the staff on Thursday.
This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Oct. 19, 2023.
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