OG Anunoby health update: Raptors guard could be out until potential conference finals berth

Raptors swingman OG Anunoby is expected to miss more time than originally thought after undergoing an emergency appendectomy Thursday.

According to ESPN, which cited unidentified sources, Anunoby could be sidelined until the Eastern Conference Finals, granted Toronto would have to make it through the first two rounds. 

The news caps off a rather tough season for the young guard. Anunoby’s father died in the fall, and Anunoby missed several games throughout the season to a wrist issue and concussion-like symptoms.

“My first thought is what a bad break for him, just bizarre timing, and it doesn’t even happen on the basketball court,” coach Nick Nurse said Friday, per ESPN. “He’s had a difficult year, but in the past 10-12 days, I feel like he was in a really good space.

“He was starting to move around a little better, feel a little better about himself. I think he was really looking forward to putting his chopped-up regular season behind him and getting a fresh start with the playoffs. But now he won’t get that chance.”

The surgery is a blow to Toronto’s lineup as the Raptors, seeded second in the Eastern Conference, prepare to take on the seventh-seeded Magic in the opening round of the NBA playoffs, a series that tips off Saturday.

“He’s just kind of a Swiss (Army) knife,” Raptors center Marc Gasol said. “He can give you a lot of stuff defensively, offensively. He’s a really unique player.”

A 6-8 second-year small forward from the U.K., Anunoby, 21, averaged 7.0 points, 2.9 rebounds and 0.7 assists over 67 games in 2018-19.