The Toronto Raptors announced that they have picked up the fourth-year team option on wing OG Anunoby. This move keeps the former Indiana Hoosier in a Raptors uniform through the 2020-2021 season, allowing him to be a restricted free agent in the summer of 2021.
The 22-year-old endured several barriers to personal success last season, including the addition of Kawhi Leonard. Leonard stepped into the small forward spot and sent Anunoby to the bench, which had an impact on his shooting. In addition to some uneven play, Anunoby also had an emergency appendectomy the day before the playoffs started, ending his season.
This move is not all that surprising, especially considering where the Raptors are in terms of competitiveness. Anunoby is still a very young, promising player who fits the mold of what every team is basically searching for in today’s NBA – a wing who can shoot and defend. If he can start to contribute like Toronto think he can, especially with a presumed starting role on the team this season, then that’s another young player for the Raptors to build around. With Pascal Siakim about to get a long-term deal too, the Raptors could have two essential building blocks to build around if OG Anunoby pans out.
After winning the championship last season, Toronto is relying on a Anunoby and Siakim plus a mishmash of low-risk high-upside forwards. They signed Rondae Hollis-Jefferson from the Brooklyn Nets and Stanley Johnson from the Pistons/Pelicans to see what sticks, if any of it.