The 26-year-old has one year remaining on his four-year, $72-million deal he signed in 2020, which came with a player option he is widely expected to decline. According to Stein's report, the Raptors' maximum possible extension offer, a four-year, $117-million deal, wouldn't be enough to entice him to remain in Toronto.
With past reports of malcontent from the versatile defensive wing, along with a bevy of trade rumours as a result, this news throws yet another wrench into a season that already boasts a tremendous amount of uncertainty for the Raptors before it's even begun.
In addition to Anunoby, Toronto is also set to walk superstar Pascal Siakam straight to free agency given the lack of extension talks between the two sides this summer, as well as sharpshooting threat Gary Trent Jr.
Anunoby nevertheless appears unfazed by the reports, expressing his desire to remain with the Raptors during Media Day on Monday.
O.G. Anunoby: "I love Toronto so I want to be here."
He says he'll let his agency handle extension talks.
— Josh Lewenberg (@JLew1050) October 2, 2023
The news comes following an offseason that already saw the Raptors lose a key asset for nothing in All-Star guard Fred VanVleet, who bolted to the Houston Rockets on a three-year, $130-million deal to pair up with Canadian World Cup hero and fellow signee Dillon Brooks.
Anunoby is coming off a career-best season with the Raptors, who have largely used the forward as a third option behind Siakam and the now departed VanVleet. The former Indiana Hosier averaged 16.8 points per game to go along with five rebounds and a league-leading 1.9 steals per game — the highest mark across the NBA.
That defensive acumen ultimately earned Anunoby his first career NBA All-Defensive team honours with a second-team selection last season.