The might be some trouble in paradise if Jake Fischer is to be believed, as Toronto Raptors star OG Anunoby is reportedly one of a few Raptors who aren’t thrilled with their role on the roster. While OG has not voiced his discontent publicly, this could be an interesting wrench to throw into Toronto’s offseason plans.
Anunoby has appeared in trade rumors before this week, but the buzz has never been louder. While it seems unusual that someone as reserved as Anunoby is this fed-up with a championship coach like Nick Nurse, there are reasons as to why he could be wanting out.
Anunoby has two more years left on his contract before he can exercise a player option and potentially leave Toronto. He’ll be 27 at the time, meaning that a big nine-figure contract could be heading his way if he continues to improve his offensive game. If Fischer’s source is accurate, Anunoby might not think Toronto can help him here.
The Raptors will likely not get a star worthy of being the No. 3 player on this team in exchange for Anunoby, so all signs point to him coming back in 2022-23. The Raptors need to make these tweaks to his role to keep one of their best as happy as possible.
The Toronto Raptors need to keep OG Anunoby happy.
3. Don’t add so many switchable forwards
If Anunoby is frustrated with his role in Toronto, the overwhelming number of forwards with similar skillsets might have something to do with it. When you have six players who all play the same style of ball, stepping on toes and butting heads off the court seems inevitable.
If there is such a thing as being too versatile, Anunoby suffered from it last year. Playing shooting guard for heavy minutes while also defending names like Nikola Jokic might speak to his quality and value, but it also showed that Toronto was stretching him thin to make up for a lack of guard and center depth.
OG Anunoby needs support from the Toronto Raptors.
Anunoby is in the prime of his career, yet he will often go into games as the No. 4 or No. 5 scoring option. His on-ball defense remains nothing short of elite, but trying to play alongside similar teammates like Chris Boucher and Thad Young while handling the ball and guarding centers is a lot to ask of just one guy.
Having a more defined role could be mutually beneficial for Anunoby and the Raptors next year. Getting a deeper bench and some extra shooters means that Anunoby, who missed some significant time due to injuries in both of the last two years, won’t have to pull double-duty.