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NBA D-League Mississauga Raptors 905 Ronald Roberts Jr

Raptors Lose 905 Star Ronald Roberts To The Bucks

Up until he was injured, Mississauga Raptors 905 Ronald Roberts was rapidly climbing the NBA D-League prospect list and about to earn a 10-day contract somewhere in the NBA. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the Milwaukee Bucks have invited him to join their NBA Summer League team.

“I felt that my season went really well,” Roberts told Pro Bball Report. “Honestly, I owe a lot to Coach Jesse (Mermuys). He had a lot of faith in me and he just believed in me and he let me do a lot of things out there that a lot coaches in the past didn’t let me do. So, he let me expand my game and that eventually got me to the top (of the D-League prospect list) and I went down (with an injury), but everything happens for a reason and I should be ready for Summer League.

“I had calls from a few teams after I got hurt. A week after I got calls from teams, but obviously I couldn’t take (the offers).”

Gery Woelfel of The Journal Times reported on Woelfel’s Press Box that the Bucks have invited him to their Summer League camp.

The Bucks, who want to bolster their suspect reserve corps, have reached a verbal agreement with Ronald Roberts to play for their summer league team.

“I love the guy,” said a coach, who saw Roberts play on several occasions last season. “He’s really athletic and he’s a high-energy guy. He plays so hard. He comes to play every night.”

“Right now, he just doesn’t shoot it well, but if he develops a jump shot, he could be a really nice player and help some (NBA) team off the bench.”

The undrafted 24-year-old averaged 18.1 points, 12.1 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in 24 games for the 905 last season and outshone the Raptors big men Bruno Caboclo and Lucas Nogueira in their D-League stints.

Unfortunately, the Raptors don’t control D-league players on the 905 who they don’t hold draft rights to or an NBA contract with, so players that start to stand out can be scooped up by other NBA teams without compensation.

“I think that’s kind of the whole goal of the D-league,” Raptors director of scouting and 905 GM Dan Tolzman said. “As much as it is to develop our Raptors players, our goal is to create NBA players. That’s the whole concept of this league.

“If Ronald (Roberts) had not gotten hurt, we would probably have had three guys that were signing rest of season contracts (with another NBA team.)”

The Bucks don’t have Roberts NBA rights yet, but they’ll get a good look at a player who can probably help them next season.

 

 

 

Stephen_Brotherston_insideStephen Brotherston covers the Toronto Raptors and visiting NBA teams at the Air Canada Centre and is a member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

 

 

 


 

NBA D-League Mississauga Raptors 905 Ronald Roberts Jr

Can Raptors 905 Ronald Roberts Jr Make The NBA?

Raptors 905 top prospect Ronald Roberts Jr saw his season cut short by injury at the All-Star break, but by that point the Toronto Raptors training camp invite had rocketed up the NBA D-League prospects list and was on the cusp of joining teammates Axel Toupane and Greg Smith as NBA call-ups.

“I felt like my season went really well,” Roberts said. “Honestly, I owe a lot to Coach Jesse (Mermuys). He had a lot of faith in me and he just believed in me and he let me do a lot of things out there that coaches in the past didn’t let me do. He let me expand my game and that eventually got me to the top (of the D-League Prospects List) and I went down (to injury).

“I had calls from a few (NBA) teams after I got hurt, a week after I had a few calls from teams, but obviously I couldn’t take them.”

It’s a common theme among the 905 players to give head coach Mermuys credit for letting them expand their game. It took a while for Mermuys to learn how to be a head coach, but he did everything with the development of his players first and foremost in his mind and the results were obvious.

The 6’8 Roberts averaged 18.1 points, 12.1 rebounds and 1.5 blocks playing at power forward and center for the 905.

Roberts is about to start rehab now that he has recovered from his injury and he plans to play in the NBA Summer League in July.

“I start my rehab on Monday,” Roberts said. “I was on crutches for two weeks and I start six weeks (of rehab) on Monday. I am feeling good. No pain or anything like that. Basically I just have to get my leg stronger before I go play again.

“I don’t know who I am going to play Summer League with, but I’ll be good to go when Summer League starts.”

The Raptors 905 approach should allow the team to successfully recruit a new crop of prospects for next year’s squad. The only unfortunate outcome from the program’s initial success is players like Roberts will likely end up being signed by an NBA team other than Toronto.

 

 

Stephen_Brotherston_insideStephen Brotherston covers the Toronto Raptors and visiting NBA teams at the Air Canada Centre and is a member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

 

 

 


NBA Toronto Raptors Ronald Roberts Jr.

Should Raptors Make Room For Ronald Roberts Jr.

When the Toronto Raptors invited forward Ronald Roberts Jr. to training camp he was the odds-on favorite to win the 15th and final spot on the roster. The Raptors had guaranteed him $75,000 for showing up, but then Canadian forward Anthony Bennett was signed and Roberts was destined to play for the Mississauga Raptors 905.

It wasn’t anything Roberts had done or not done. He looked good in preseason. There just wasn’t an open spot for him on the roster. However, Toronto wasn’t wrong to be interested in this very athletic forward. As the best player on the 905, he’s worked his way up to second place on the NBA D-League Prospect Watch List.

NBA D-League Raptors 905 Ronald Roberts Jr

At some point in the near future, the Raptors are going to have to make a decision. Either they make room for their prospect in Toronto or Roberts is going to get called up from the D-League by another NBA team and they could lose him for nothing.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, Roberts has been a player to watch since he went undrafted in 2014.

Draft Express, L.A. Clippers Mini-Combine Recap and Analysis

Roberts proved to be the best athlete at the workout, and possibly one of the best athletes in the entire draft, finishing a monster dunk after ripping baseline from the short corner.

Roberts has potential, however, due to his freakish athleticism and nice frame. He’s another player a few NBA teams would like to get on their D-League team to see if they can develop his skill-level a bit and improve his rebounding technique.

In the D-League, Roberts has gone from a suspect rebounder at St. Joseph’s to a beast on the boards. He’s even starting to develop a jump shot. With the 905 this season, he’s averaging 18.7 points on 61.2 percent shooting, 12.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks playing at the power forward and center spots.

The rationale for the Raptors to consider making room for him with the big club is solid. He went through training camp with the team and 905 head coach Jesse Mermuys is running the same plays as Raptors head coach Dwane Casey. Roberts won’t be lost stepping into practices at the Air Canada Centre.

“It’s pretty much the same,” Roberts told Pro Bball Report earlier this season. “They try to implement the same rules and different schemes defensively and offensively has the same sets and stuff. It’s pretty much the same (as in Toronto). Obviously, the competition in the NBA is way better, but I would say that would be the major difference. As far as coaching, I would say everything is pretty much the same.”

While he is still a work in progress, he is an energy guy and that is something that often translates to the next level while the skills catch up.

“I play with great energy,” Roberts said. “I try to rebound, finish, shoot an open jumper and try to drive by a guy if I’m playing the four or try to post up a guy if I’m playing the five. I’m pretty interchangeable. I’ve just got to look at my match-up and see what I feel I can do best against him whether it’s on the perimeter or down low.”

There is no denying how good Roberts has looked at the Development League level. The Raptors have decisions to make.

 

 

 

Stephen_Brotherston_insideStephen Brotherston covers the Toronto Raptors and visiting NBA teams at the Air Canada Centre and is a member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

 

 

 

 

Is Ronald Roberts The Raptors 905 Leader?

By Michael Asiffo

Raptors 905 power forward Ronald Roberts Jr. has had an impressive D-League campaign so far this season. He is currently averaging a sensational 15.3 points and 12.7 rebounds per game on 58.5% shooting. His stats are very impressive, especially when you consider Roberts’s undersized stature at 6’8. This impressive showing by Roberts has given him a steady job on the Raptors 905 club as one of the team’s best players. However, that is not the end goal Roberts has envisioned for himself. The big man sees his role on the 905 as something more.

905 Roberts Jr. & Bruno Caboclo

“My role is to be a leader because it is my second year playing pro,” Roberts said. “There’s a couple guys here who just came out of school and I played in the D-League last year.”

While the whole quote shows the maturity of Roberts at this stage of his career, the first seven words that Roberts said are the most important. Every good team, at every level, needs a leader. It is also a big bonus if that leader is as productive for his team as Roberts is for the 905.

Roberts not only fills up the stat sheet, but brings intensity for the club as well. Things like energy level and being vocal on defense are not quantifiable, but Roberts has shown these actions on the court in every game he has played for the 905 this season. To many basketball pundits, those actions are essential to showing leadership qualities. In other words Roberts looks like his leadership style is a leading by example style.

“I definitely lead by just action,” Roberts said. “By just playing with energy and just playing hard and encourage my teammates to follow.”

While it is unknown if Roberts could actually be a great leader due to the team being in its infancy state, there have been some really positive signs for the Raptors 905 fans to look towards penciling him in.

“Ron is a play hard energy guy,” said Raptors 905 coach Jesse Mermuys.

These five words are very important because it highlights the most interesting thing about Roberts. Roberts is a talented player. At 6’8, to average a double-double is impressive. However, the most impressive part of Roberts’s game is that he still plays with intensity. It is cliché to say, but more often than not, if one of the best players on the team brings intensity the rest of the team follows suit. That is what will make Ronald Roberts a leader on 905.

So, it is established that Ronald Roberts has the leadership qualities to become the Raptors 905’s new leader, but what does this mean in the big picture. Big picture, it most likely means that Roberts will be the face of the 905 this season. That may come as a shock to many people considering that this is a team that features Bruno Caboclo and Delon Wright, but Roberts right now plays in such a way where he galvanizes his team the best. That is not to say that Wright or Caboclo do not galvanize the team, but it does speak to how well Roberts is playing. Regardless of what happens, the development of Roberts as a player and possible leader will be fun to watch.

 

 

Michael Asiffo1

Freelance reporter Michael Asiffo is an up and coming journalist who covers the Raptors 905.

 

 

 
 

 

Raptors Waive Scott, Toupane, Kyser And Roberts

The Toronto Raptors reduced their roster to the league maximum 15 players on Saturday. The four players on non-guaranteed contracts were released as expected.

The waived players include free-agent guard Shannon Scott, guard-forward Axel Toupane and forwards Michale Kyser and Ronald Roberts. It is hoped they will join the Raptors D-League affiliate, Raptors 905.

 

Press Release:

RAPTORS RELEASE FOUR

Roster Reduced To 15

The Toronto Raptors announced Saturday they have waived free-agent guard Shannon Scott, guard-forward Axel Toupane (too-PON) and forwards Michale (Michael) Kyser and Ronald Roberts.

Scott totaled two points, four rebounds, two assists and 16 minutes in two outings.

Toupane appeared in two games where he was scoreless with two rebounds in 21 minutes.

Kyser was held scoreless with two rebounds in five minutes in his lone preseason appearance.

Roberts saw action in three preseason contests recording 10 points and eight rebounds in 23 minutes.

The Raptors finished their 2015 preseason schedule with a 5-2 mark. They will open the 2015-16 regular season Wednesday at Air Canada Centre at 7:30 p.m. when they play host to the Indiana Pacers.

 

 

Raptors Confirm 17 Players Coming To Training Camp

The Toronto Raptors have officially signed undrafted free agents Ronald Roberts, Axel Toupane and Michale Kyser to bring their training camp roster to 17 players. It is believed that all three players have been signed to modest non-guaranteed deals. An NBA team can have a maximum of 15 players on their roster once the season starts.

These players were on the Raptors 2015 NBA Summer League team and will be competing for the lone remaining roster spot in Toronto. However, it is still possible that President and General Manager Masai Ujiri could sign a veteran NBA player to a minimum guaranteed contract prior to camp dashing their hopes.

With the Raptors 905 NBA D-League team about to start their first season, it should be assumed the Raptors are hoping that some or all of their training camp invitees will play in Mississauga this fall.

 

Press Release:

RAPTORS SIGN MICHALE KYSER AND AXEL TOUPANE

The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday they have signed forward Michale (Michael) Kyser and guard-forward Axel Toupane (Too-PON). Per team policy, financial terms of the deals were not disclosed.
 
Kyser, 6-foot-9, 205 pounds, recently participated on the Raptors’ entry in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, where he averaged 3.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 14.6 minutes in four games. He recorded 12 points, seven rebounds and three blocks in 28 minutes in his lone start July 17 versus Portland.
 
Kyser averaged 8.6 points, a team-high 6.6 rebounds and 28.4 minutes in 36 games (35 starts) in 2014-15 as a senior at Louisiana Tech. He blocked 102 shots, fifth most in the NCAA, and was named to the Conference USA All-Defensive team for the second straight year. He finished as school’s all-time leader in blocked shots with 363, the most by any player in college basketball over the past four years.
 
Toupane, 6-foot-7, 197 pounds, was also part of the Raptors’ 2015 Summer League squad and averaged 4.3 points, 1.7 rebounds and 11.0 minutes in three contests. He played for Strasbourg (France) in the French ProA League last season and helped his team earn back-to-back regular-season championships (2014 and 2015). Toupane averaged 7.5 points, 2.5 rebounds and 18.4 minutes in 42 games last season.

Prior Press Release:
 

RAPTORS SIGN RONALD ROBERTS

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed forward Ronald Roberts to a multi-year contract. Per team policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
 
Roberts, 6-foot-8, 225 pounds, recently participated with the Raptors’ entry in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, where he averaged 10.3 points, 9.5 rebounds and 23.5 minutes in four games. Roberts posted a double-double (14 points, 12 rebounds) in the opener July 10 against Sacramento.
 
Roberts spent the 2014-15 season with the Delaware 87ers (NBA D-League), Santa Cruz Warriors (NBA D-League) and San Miguel Beermen (Philippines Basketball Association).
 
Roberts averaged 10.7 points and 6.6 rebounds over four seasons at St. Joseph’s and helped the Hawks claim the 2014 A-10 Tournament title.

 

 
 

NBA Toronto Raptors Ronald Roberts Jr.

Raptors To Invite Kyser, Toupane And Roberts To Training Camp

It’s yet to be officially confirmed, but it looks like Toronto Raptors President and General Manager Masai Ujiri is at it again with (at least) three new training camp invitees getting the nod while the NBA Summer League showcase was on. Raptors Republic has been keeping track of the twitter leaks and believes Ronald Roberts, Axel Toupane and Michale Kyser will secure non-guaranteed deals with Toronto. (The Raptors have confirmed a multi-year deal for Roberts, see press release below.)

If you’ve been paying attention, this will be the third year in a row Ujiri has taken a hard look at three fringe prospects in the hopes he’ll find that diamond in the rough. In 2013 it was Carlos Morais, Chris Wright and Julyan Stone. Last summer it was Greg Stiemsma, Will Cherry and Jordan Hamilton. This year, however, one should be realistically suspecting that Ujiri is using the common $25,000 training camp invite guarantee money to grease the skids for most if not all of these players to sign NBA D-League contracts to play for the Raptors 905.

In Ujiri’s first summer in Toronto, it was all about changing a losing culture and he brought in quite a few young players in addition to the camp invites. As expectations were low, the possibility of winning a spot on the Raptors was pretty good. Last year the team expected to win, so the veteran center Stiemsma had a huge advantage. But what’s interesting is all of Ujiri’s previous training camp invitees have looked pretty good in training camp and preseason games. If this was a lottery team with available roster spots, they all might have stuck around.

Roberts is an athlete and he impressed at Summer League again this year with the very high bounce in his step and defensive potential. A four-year player at St. Joesph’s, he was a double-double power forward in the NBA D-League and overseas last year after a training camp invite from the 76ers.

He also got a preseason look from the Philadelphia 76ers but didn’t get enough run to really evaluate him (it was a similar deal to this – three years, $35,000 guaranteed, two non-guaranteed years after that).

Roberts had 14.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.3 blocks as a college senior. In 14 games with Delaware last year he averaged 15.8 points, 11.6 rebounds, 0.9 steals and 1.0 blocks. The knock on Roberts is his 6’7 height and he did look kind of short standing in the post at Summer League.

The 22-year-old Toupane has been playing in the French League where he averages less than 20 minutes per game, but he does show the potential to become a three-point threat. He shot 44 percent from deep in the Eurocup last year. Maybe a “3-and-D” wing? He has the height and length to play small forward, but at under 200 lbs last summer, does he have the strength?

You’d be forgiven for failing to notice Kyser on the Raptors 2015 Summer League team. He didn’t play much until the final game. However, the very skinny 6’10 forward was all over the court for 28 minutes at the end. Kyser scored 12 points, grabbed 7 boards and blocked 3 shots, but this kid didn’t look much like the power forward he’s advertised as being. Seriously, it looked like he was a wing.

Listed at a generous 205 lbs, Kyser looks more like a version of Terrence Ross minus the jump shot on the court than a player expected to bang in the paint for boards. However, those 3 blocks he got on the last day of Summer League were just more of what this kid did on a regular basis in college. As a senior he averaged 8.6 points, 6.5 rebounds, 2.9 blocks and 28.7 minutes. Swatting away shots was something he did exceptionally well in all four years at Louisiana Tech.

The Raptors already have two rookies on their 2015 roster in Norman Powell and Delon Wright, plus they are bringing back sophomores Bruno Caboclo and Lucas Nogueira. Adding yet another rookie who is likely to be assigned to the Raptors 905 D-League team doesn’t make a lot of sense. On the other hand, signing all three of these prospects with the Raptors 905 makes an immense amount of sense as they all have potential. It wouldn’t hurt the Raptors 905 if Ujiri could find a couple more worthy camp invitees for the big club to release back to his D-League team.

 

 

Stephen_Brotherston_insideStephen Brotherston covers the Toronto Raptors and visiting NBA teams at the Air Canada Centre and is a member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

 

 

Press Release

RAPTORS SIGN RONALD ROBERTS

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed forward Ronald Roberts to a multi-year contract. Per team policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Roberts, 6-foot-8, 225 pounds, recently participated with the Raptors’ entry in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, where he averaged 10.3 points, 9.5 rebounds and 23.5 minutes in four games. Roberts posted a double-double (14 points, 12 rebounds) in the opener July 10 against Sacramento.

Roberts spent the 2014-15 season with the Delaware 87ers (NBA D-League), Santa Cruz Warriors (NBA D-League) and San Miguel Beermen (Philippines Basketball Association).

Roberts averaged 10.7 points and 6.6 rebounds over four seasons at St. Joseph’s and helped the Hawks claim the 2014 A-10 Tournament title.