Title: OG Anunoby’s play in season opener provides snapshot of what Raptors need from his bounce-back year
Date: October 25, 2019
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about OG Anunoby’s season opener, which was a snapshot of what the Raptors need from him.
It’s fitting that OG Anunoby’s most-played album of late is Young Thug’s “So Much Fun.”
While Anunoby hasn’t had quite the highs of one of his favourite artist, the trajectory is appreciated: An unexpectedly successful emergence on the scene, perhaps ahead of schedule, and a ratcheting up of expectations, fair or otherwise. Where Young Thug has tried – across seven albums in a feverish five-year period – to get outside of his comfort zone and expand his range, he remains at his best sticking to what made him successful and sprinkling in new approaches and character-defining ad-libs.
Ahead of a third NBA season in which Anunoby is looking to return to form, the lesson is instructive: Just be yourself. Anunoby has added plenty to his game since his breakout rookie year, but the Raptors don’t need a redefined Anunoby, they need a progressively improved version of that Anunoby. If all of the improvements and additions to his game can work like ad-libs and flow changes around that main role of a 3-and-D wing, Anunoby is going to have plenty of hits.
If Tuesday’s season opener against the Pelicans is any indication, “Boy Back” will be the defining track of Anunoby’s year.