The Toronto Raptors may be on the verge of losing both Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby in free agency, as Masai Uiri has refused to either extend or trade them. This could lead to some very dark futures for the Raptors, one of which involves Nick Nurse and the Philadelphia 76ers making a move for them.
Anunoby might be likelier to head to Philadelphia than Siakam, as he could be a tertiary star behind Joel Embiid and the much-improved Tyrese Maxey who doesn’t take up as many shots. Philly might be planning to give him a huge contract when free agency opens up.
According to Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype, the 76ers will prioritize adding expiring contracts so as not to take up tons of their 2024 cap space. This would give them more financial flexibility than most contenders, and it could end with Anunoby getting a massive offer.
In the same way Fred VanVleet got a three-year max contract from the Rockets and Bruce Brown secured the bag with the Pacers, Philly could give Anunoby a shorter deal that is big on money up front to offset the Embiid contract and eventual Maxey extension. This could be a very attractive offer for OG.
NBA rumors: 76ers opening up space for Toronto Raptors’ OG Anunoby.
Anunoby’s defensive skills can be matched by only a select few across the rest of the league, and his new offensive improvements as a shooter have him positioned to ascend into the elite tier of shooters. Anunoby is worth every penny of the next nine-figure deal he signs.
With the cap expanding and switchability being even more valuable in the modern NBA, Anunoby is ready to cash in. Toronto must know that and realize that keeping both OG and Siakam while giving Barnes a meaty extension is simply not a financially possible situation.
Losing Anunoby to Philly would be an absolute gut punch. Watching any player go to a rival is tough, but Anunoby serving as the final piece Nick Nurse needs to complete his defense would help Philadelphia and Boston separate from the rest of the Eastern Conference.
The Raptors will try anything they can to keep Anunoby, as he seems like a better long-term play for a Barnes-led team than VanVleet was. However, they need to be well aware of the fact that contenders from both conferences will be all over him on the open market.