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OG Anunoby might be a target for the Knicks

So suggests the NY Post’s Zach Braziller in a recent podcast.

NBA: New York Knicks at Toronto Raptors Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

So far, the New York Knicks have had a relatively quiet offseason. They traded Obi Toppin, thereby giving him a much-needed fresh start in Indiana, and signed Donte DiVincenzo, thereby reuniting a trio of Villanova champions. New York may not be done wheeling and dealing, either.

On the latest episode of the Let’s Talk Knicks podcast, NY Post’s Zach Braziller opined about the Obi and DDV deals. He also suggested that we keep tabs on OG Anunoby. The small forward recently signed with CAA, the agency once helmed by Leon Rose, and provides size, defensive acumen, and three-point shooting:

Last season, Anunoby shot 39% from deep on five and a half attempts per game. He can charge the rim, too, and took 30% of his shots there last year. The Knicks fell short due in 2022-23 to a lack of shooting, and Anunoby would help to address that.

He is also known for his defensive versatility and can guard positions 1 through 4. A tag-team of OG and Quentin Grimes—plus Immanuel Quickley and Josh Hart on the second unit—would surely make New York one of the league’s best defending clubs.

Notably absent from that roster is RJ Barrett, who would likely be included in a deal for Toronto’s 6’7”, 232 lb. wing.

The Knicks could wait for the next off-season to pursue Anunoby. Waiting until then would allow him to opt out of his player option, saving the Knicks from having to give up any great assets in a swap.

In that wait-and-see scenario, New York would still have RJ Barrett on the books. Barrett and OG overlap in position and size, which makes it hard to envision them coexisting. Hence, they would have to do something by RJ then. If Barrett has a breakout year in 2023-24, then Anunoby would be unnecessary next off-season. Could happen! Juius Randle said on Paul George’s podcast that RJ had another growth spurt.

Then again, if Barrett has another lukewarm year and Anunoby blows up in Toronto, the former will lose market value and the latter could become too rich for New York’s taste.

I hate what-if scenarios. Fortune favors the bold. Now is the time to trade the freshly-23-year-old Barrett for the soon-to-be-26 Anunoby.

RJ Barrett might not be disappointed about joining the Raptors. Toronto has a new coach, they recently lost Fred VanVleet, and Pascal Siakam might be on his way out. This could be the ideal time for RJ to step in and assume a leadership role alongside Scottie Barnes. Plus, the Canadian fan base will love their native son.

Barrett is due to make $23.8 M this season. Anunoby will make $18.6 M. There would be some other pieces in play to make the money work. Draft picks, too, one assumes. Masai Ujiri, president of the Raptors, can be a tough negotiator and will want to replace Anunoby with equal talent, plus extra. However, Leon Rose is proving to be a sensible deal-maker for the Knicks. I’ll eat my shoe if an Anunoby deal requires both Barrett AND Immanuel Quickley to go out.

Whatever happens, we can be sure the Knicks brass has other plans cooking. More rumors to come! Go Knicks!