Bleacher Report suggests a Lu Dort for O.G. Anunoby swap for Thunder

2023 summer league is officially over, which means we’ve reached the slowest part of the NBA calendar as the Oklahoma City Thunder prepare for training camp in September.

Even though free agency is mostly settled, that doesn’t mean transactions have to slow down the first couple of months. As the Thunder have shown, the trade market is open 24/7 and 365 days a year.

Bleacher Report writers Grant Hughes and Dan Favale decided to conjure up one new trade idea for all 30 NBA teams. For the Thunder’s entry, it involved acquiring one of the Toronto Raptors’ better players.

  • Details: The Thunder acquire O.G. Anunoby from the Raptors for Lu Dort, 2024 first-round pick (top-10 protected via Jazz), 2024 first-round pick (via Clippers), 2027 first-round pick (top-4 protected) and a 2025 second-round pick (via Hawks)

The reasoning behind the deal for the Thunder is that it gives them an upgrade at the starting wing spot over Dort albeit with some risk involved:

“The Thunder hit the upgrade button on Dort with this deal, sending him to the Raptors for a bigger, more versatile defender in Anunoby. Added bonus: Anunoby has hit at least 38.7 of his trey attempts in three of the last four years (Dort is a career 33.2 percent shooter from distance) and possesses the strength to credibly defend centers.

That last attribute is key, as the Thunder may need to have a bruiser—even an undersized one—on hand to spare Chet Holmgren from the most punishing physical matchups…

The reason for what may seem like a modest pick outlay is the uncertainty surrounding Anunoby’s future. He can opt out of his deal next summer, and though OKC should have some idea of what it’ll cost to keep him, the possibility of a walk-away factors into the offer here.”

While this is an upgrade on paper for the Thunder, they’ve never really been the type of chase for instant gratification without long-term security. Trading for Anunoby on a (likely) expiring deal for a team not yet ready to content seems like an uncharacteristic move from the OKC front office.

Perhaps this is the type of move the Thunder could make next summer, but for now, they’re willing to stay patient and see what their current young core can do when fully healthy.

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Story originally appeared on Thunder Wire