Scottie Barnes’ wait was even shorter than expected on Thursday night.
The Toronto Raptors drafted the Florida State star with the No. 4 overall pick in the NBA Draft. It’s the second straight year FSU has had a No. 4 overall pick as Patrick Williams went to the Chicago Bulls in 2020.
Barnes averaged 10.3 points, 4.1 assists and 4.0 rebounds in his one season at FSU but showcased his confidence as well as used his wingspan on the defensive end. While still in the developmental stages as an offensive player, Barnes offers the prospect of a 6-foot-8 defender who could limit drives and alter shots of opposing guards.
“My biggest takeaway from college was just staying mature, growing up, being who I am on the floor, working on different aspects of the game,” Barnes said. “I was learning more mental components of what it takes to be a pro at Florida State. Florida State, they develop a lot of pros, the program is just rising and rising. So, I would just say developing that pro mentality, that pro mindset.”
Barnes was the ACC’s freshman and sixth man of the year. He continues a run of recent first-round picks from FSU, including Malik Beasley (2016), Jonathan Isaac (2017), Mfiondu Kabengele (2019) and Patrick Williams and Devin Vassell (2020). He is the sixth NBA lottery pick in school history: Williams (No. 4 overall, 2020, Chicago Bulls), Barnes (No. 4 overall, 2021 Toronto Raptors), Jonathan Isaac (No. 6 overall, 2017, Orlando Magic), George McCloud (No. 7 overall, 1989, Indiana Pacers), Devin Vassell (No. 11 overall, 2020, San Antonio Spurs) and Al Thornton (No. 14 overall, 2007, Los Angeles Clippers).
While Barnes had been projected as the No. 5 overall pick by the Orlando Magic in many pre-draft mocks, Toronto had the No. 4 pick and grabbed Barnes.
“I think he has a desire to be really good,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said. “He’s a pretty coachable guy from what I can tell so far.”
In Hamilton’s 19 seasons as FSU’s head coach, 16 Seminoles have been selected in the NBA Draft. Barnes is the 11th first-round pick in Hamilton’s head coaching career.
“This is a great place for Scottie to begin his NBA career,” said Hamilton. “He’s just what Toronto needs. Great place for him. Great coach. Great organization. It is a great place for him to start. They have won a World Championship. The Raptors organization has a winning DNA. He is going to be a great teammate. We are all very excited for him and looking forward to him being a great NBA player.”
Two Seminoles were selected in the second round. Balsa Koprivica was selected by the Hornets at No. 57 but he will reportedly be swapped to the Pistons. RaiQuan Gray was selected at No. 59 overall by the Brooklyn Nets.
FSU and Texas were the only schools with three selection among the 60 picks in the two-round NBA Draft.