OG Anunoby and Jarrett Allen have both made visits to Portland leading up to the NBA Draft, and according to Trail Blazers Digital Reporter Casey Holdahl, those meetings left both prospects with positive feelings about possibly playing in the Pacific Northwest.
Anunoby, a sophomore from Indiana known for his defensive acumen, had this to say about his interaction with the Blazers:
“It went well,” said Anunoby of the meeting. “They talked about defensive versatility, being able to guard multiple positions, switch on anyone and how much it helps the defense if you have guys who can do that.”
Due to his recovery from a mid-season knee injury, Anunoby was unable to perform in front of Portland’s coaching staff during his visit. Even with those limitations in mind, it didn’t prevent the two parties from having a discussion about a future partnership.
“They talked about how I’d fit with the team, what they liked about me and even stuff I need to work on,” said Anunoby, who grew up in Missouri after being born in the United Kingdom. “I could see myself there.”
Anunoby possesses a skill set that would normally be off the board when the Blazers pick at No. 15, but his injury concerns have had an adverse effect on his draft stock. He will likely miss at least some portion of the 2017-18 season, but Holdahl provided some clarity on Anunoby’s road to recovery on Wednesday.
Indiana forward OG Anunoby said he believes he'll be ready to return to full action between late October and early November.— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) June 21, 2017
Allen, a freshman center from Texas, was part of the final group of players to visit the Blazers’ practice facility earlier this week. Like Anunoby, Allen was unable to practice, but he still managed to leave Portland with an upbeat outlook on his potential role with the team.
“I did everything, just didn’t workout for them. Met with the coaching staff, the front office, just did everything except for the workout,” said Allen. “(Portland) said they didn’t do so well last year about (defense). I think they said I could come in and help with that.”
“They felt good about me,” said Allen. “The vibe I got from the meeting, it was a good vibe. Everything went well.”
Both players have a good chance of being available when the Blazers make their first selection on Thursday. You can learn more about Allen and Anunoby by checking out both of their draft profiles before the NBA Draft gets underway.