Report: Serge Ibaka agrees to two-year deal with Clippers

Michael Grange joins Sportsnet Central to discuss the Los Angeles Clippers signing Serge Ibaka, what impact it has for the Toronto Raptors and what their next moves could be.

Free agent big man Serge Ibaka has agreed to a deal with the Los Angeles Clippers, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania.

Per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the deal is worth $19 million over two years, with the second-year including a player option.

The Clippers had the full midlevel exception available to them this off-season, worth $9.2 million, and used that to bring Ibaka on board. The Brooklyn Nets, who were one of the teams competing for Ibaka's services, only had a smaller version of the same exception to offer, known as the taxpayer MLE (worth $5.7 million). The Toronto Raptors, also vying to retain the big man, could have offered more than either of those clubs, but likely were restricting their proposal to one year in order to keep salary cap flexibility open for the 2021 off-season.

Whether or not the one-year aspect played into Ibaka's final decision (perhaps less so, since he will be able to leave Los Angeles should he desire after one season thanks to the player option in his new deal), the 31-year-old will at least find himself in a similar competitive situation, with the Clippers still considered an early title contender.

Perhaps having had the most succesful season of his career in 2019-20, Ibaka was at his best anchoring second units for the Raptors while occasionally starting. He can roll to the rim with anyone when given a head of steam, and his ability to stretch the floor makes the threat of a pick-and-pop considerable. He's not necessarily a great one-on-one defender and isn't as mobile as he once was, but his help-side defence remains an impressive element of his game.

Los Angeles, who just recently lost reigning Sixth Man of the Year Montrezl Harrell to the rival Los Angeles Lakers, have now shored up one of the weak points of their roster, with Ivica Zubac and Patrick Patterson having been the primary rotation bigs prior to Ibaka's signing.

The Raptors, who are now significantly light in their front court, will shift to trying to convince Marc Gasol, their other free agent big man, to return.

Wojnarowski reported early Sunday morning that the Raptors and Golden State Warriors were both in contract discussions with Gasol.

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