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Report: Raptors finalizing deal to send SF OG Anunoby to the Knicks

New York will send back a package featuring RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley for the wing.

OG Anunoby #3 of the Toronto Raptors dribbles the ball during the game against the Charlotte Hornets on December 29, 2023 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images

The Toronto Raptors are trading SF OG Anunoby and F Precious Achiuwa to the New York Knicks for a package featuring SG RJ Barrett and G Immanuel Quickley, per multiple reports. The news was first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania of The Athletic (of course). On top of Barrett and Quickley, the Knicks are sending draft compensation to the Raptors. The draft compensation is a second-round pick, per Charania.

Anunoby is signed through the 2024-25 season, but his contract for next season is a player option worth around $19 million. So OG has the option to become an unrestricted free agent after this season. Considering this move could be a rental for the Knicks, it’s not a bad haul for Toronto, which is looking like a play-in tournament team at best. The Raptors could sell off more assets like big Pascal Siakam before the NBA Trade Deadline in a few months. Siakam is also in the final year of his deal and can become an UFA during the offseason.

As for the Knicks, at 17-14 they’re firmly in the playoff picture in the Eastern Conference. But if the season were to end today, the Knicks would be the 7-seed and playing in the play-in tournament. New York would benefit from getting into the top-6 and top-4 in the conference. Anunoby gives the Knicks a shutdown defender on the wing who can also shoot and compliment guards Jalen Brunson and Josh Hart well.

New York also gets a lot of cap flexibility by getting out from Barrett’s deal. He’s signed through the 2026-27 season at a cap hit of $23 million this season, one that increases by $2 million in each season until the deal is done. In order to get out from Barrett’s deal and add OG, the Knicks had to part with Quickley, who was their most coveted asset. In 30 games off the bench, Quickley is averaging 15 points while shooting nearly 40% from 3-point range this season. After losing Fred VanVleet in free agency this offseason, the Raptors were in the market for a point guard. Quickley can now start for Toronto and get ample playing time. Or come off the bench and still contribute more.

Anunoby is averaging 15.1 points and 3.9 rebounds while shooting 48.9% from the floor and 37.4% from downtown over 27 starts this season for the Raptors. Those numbers are mostly down across the board but you could chalk it up to the Raptors not being as competitive and missing a legit PG in FVV. Anunoby should thrive under head coach Tom Thibodeau, who has always valued defense and intensity over all else in his coaching career.

This move doesn’t really move the Knicks into legit contender territory. If Mitchell Robinson hadn’t gone down with an ankle injury to miss the rest of the season, we’d be having a different discussion. It’s still tough to see the Knicks competing with the top teams in the East (Celtics, Bucks, Sixers). But this move could give New York an edge to get by those middle teams in the standings like Miami, Orlando and Cleveland.

DraftKings Sportsbook yanked Knicks’ futures odds after the report broke. So we’ll see where the dust settles. The Knicks aren’t winning the division but their odds to come out of the East likely increased a bit. New York also gets a boost in the market to make the playoffs since this move could help the team get out of the play-in.

The Knicks are still +6000 to win the NBA Championship this season after the OG trade. The Knicks are +2000 to win the East.