Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Portland is interested in OG Anunoby.
On the eve of the 2022 NBA Draft, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reported that the Trail Blazers are in the hunt for the Raptors forward with the No. 7 pick in Thursday’s draft “up for grabs.”
The Portland Trail Blazers are seeking Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby with the No. 7 pick in Thursday’s draft, according to league sources. @YahooSports.
—Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) June 22, 2022
This isn’t the first time Anunoby has been linked to Portland. In late May, Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report broke the news Anunoby was believed to be one of the team’s top targets this offseason as they look to rebuild a contender around six-time All-Star Damian Lillard.
One of his other targets was said to be Jerami Grant… who is reportedly now targeting the Trail Blazers.
MORE: Business grades: Blazers look to compete with Grant acquisition
While Raptors forward Scottie Barnes was quick to reject Fischer’s initial report, here we are almost a month later and the Trail Blazers are still connected to Anunoby.
A lot can change in the hours between now and the draft, but who might the Raptors have their eyes on if they trade Anunoby in a deal headlined by Portland’s No. 7 pick? A couple of names come to mind.
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Who the Raptors could target with the No. 7 pick in the OG Anunoby trade
Now is probably a good time to remind them that the Raptors interviewed Dyson Daniels Y Benedict Mathurin in the 2022 NBA Draft Combine, two prospects who have long been viewed as lottery picks. Toronto doesn’t even have a first-round pick in the draft, of course, but it would have a good chance of drafting any of them if made acquire the No. 7 pick from Portland.
Maybe the Raptors were up to something after all.
Dyson Daniels fits in with the Raptors
NBA.com draft expert Kyle Irving has Daniels, a 6-foot-6 Australian shooting guard who spent the 2021-22 season with G League Ignite, ranked as the seventh-best prospect in the NBA Draft from 2022, comparing him to the Pacers shooting guard. Get rid of Haliburton.
“At the NBA Draft Combine, Daniels verified that comparison for himself on offense, saying he watches players like Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso on the defensive end,” Irving writes.
“With his two-way engine, passing ability and penchant for off-the-ball scoring, Daniels can split the difference between a rotation-ready rookie and a long-term development project. A prospect who can fit right into any minor role he comes across.” Ask him, Daniels also has an intriguing edge that makes him a tempting prospect, just like Haliburton.”
MORE: Full scan report on Dyson Daniels
Bennedict Mathurin fits the Raptors
One spot below Daniels on Irving’s big board is Mathurin, a 6-foot-6 guard from Montreal whom Irving compares to Zach LaVine and Jaylen Brown.
“At the NBA Draft Combine, Mathurin told me he watches Devin Booker and Zach LaVine on offense and Mikal Bridges and Jrue Holiday on defense a lot,” Irving writes. “If he comes close to matching that combination, we’ll look back five years from now and wonder why Mathurin wasn’t in serious contention for the first overall pick.
“I think Mathurin has shades of LaVine and Celtics shooting guard Jaylen Brown in his game. LaVine has flourished as an elite scorer in crucial moments and is the crown jewel of this summer’s free-agent class. Brown, meanwhile, he’s showing off his two-way play as a second or first choice in the NBA Finals.”
As noted by Michael Grange of SNThere is already some familiarity between Mathurin and the Raptors, having spent last summer in training camp with the Canadian team, which is coached by Nick Nurse.
MORE: Full scouting report on Bennedict Mathurin
Shaedon Sharpe fits the Raptors
Another name worth keeping an eye on: Canada’s Shaedon Sharpe.
Despite not playing a single game at Kentucky this season, Sharpe is widely considered one of the most talented players in this year’s draft class, a 6-foot-6 guard who has a “high ceiling as a shooter.” volume”.
Sharpe was once seen as a possible top five pick, but Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer reported on June 16 who is said to have disappointed some teams in pre-draft workouts and could now be a target for any team that acquires the Trail Blazers’ No. 7 pick.
MORE: Full scouting report on Shaedon Sharpe
Will that team be the Raptors? Time will tell, but Toronto has some interesting options if it decides to move up in the draft.