NBA

Who is OG Anunoby: The new British-born Toronto Raptors draftee

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When the Toronto Raptors selected British-born forward OG Anunoby with the No. 23 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, they got a player who has had quite the journey already in his life.

From moving to the United States from London to dealing with injuries in college, Anunoby has already had to overcome some major obstacles to reach this point of his career.

However, the talented 6'8" forward out of Indiana became the second highest-drafted British-born player in NBA history on Thursday night, trailing only Ben Gordon, who was selected with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft.

Ebi was out of the league after two disappointing seasons - a fate Anunoby will try his best to avoid as he joins a team that reached the Eastern Conference semifinals last season.

So, how did Anunoby get to the point where he made history for British-born basketball players? Let's take a look at the life of the newest member of the Toronto Raptors.

Early life

Ogugua "OG" Anunoby was born in London to Nigerian parents on July 17, 1997. He relocated to Jefferson City, Missouri, to play high school basketball, where he played well enough to become a finalist for the state's Mr. Basketball award as a senior.

That year, Anunoby averaged 19.1 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. He was a 3-star college prospect in the 2015 recruiting class.

Anunoby chose to commit to the Indiana Hoosiers over Georgia, Iowa and a host of other power-conference programs.

A college career cut short

Anunoby wasn't like many of the freshmen who have dominated the NBA Draft classes in recent years, getting off to a slow start in his first season with the Hoosiers.

In the 2015-16 season, Anunoby appeared in 34 games, but only averaged 13.7 minutes, 4.9 points and 2.6 rebounds per contest as the Hoosiers went 27-8 and ended up losing in the Sweet 16 to the eventual-champion North Carolina Tar Heels.

Anunoby was off to a much better start last season, averaging 11.1 points and 5.4 rebounds per game while playing 25.1 minutes per contest.

However, after only 16 games, the star forward injured his knee and had to undergo season-ending surgery. He decided to declare for the draft after the season, ending his time with the Hoosiers.

A spot in British history

As mentioned earlier, Anunoby became the second highest-drafted British-born player when the Raptors chose him with the No. 23 overall pick.

However, he's only the third-highest drafted British national, as Luol Deng - who was a British citizen but wasn't born in the U.K. - went No. 7 overall in the 2004 NBA Draft.

Anunoby will be the 12th British national to play in the NBA and the third to play for the Raptors, following in the footsteps of Robert Archibald and Pops Mensah-Bonsu.

OG's brother, Chigbo Anunoby, spent some time in the NFL, bouncing around with the Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans, Minnesota Vikings and other squads, but never recorded a statistic.

OG will hope to have a better professional career than his brother when he takes the court this fall. And, if he impresses early in his career, he could eventually see some action for the British national team in international tournaments like the Olympics.

Topics:
Eastern Conference
NBA
DeMar DeRozan
Toronto Raptors
Atlantic Division
NBA Playoffs
NBA Draft
Kyle Lowry

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