The Toronto Raptors have officially acquired power forward Serge Ibaka from the Orlando Magic in-exchange for Terrence Ross and a 2017 first-round pick.
Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical was the first to report the trade earlier on Tuesday morning.
Toronto, who owns two first-round picks in the 2017 NBA Draft, will send the lower first round pick to the Magic, and keep the higher pick. The Raptors’ additional draft pick is coming from the Los Angeles Clippers.
Trading for Ibaka gives the Raptors and immediate upgrade at power forward over Patrick Patterson, who is better suited for a role off the bench in Toronto alongside Cory Joseph, Norman Powell, and Jared Sullinger. Toronto will now trot out a lineup of Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, DeMarre Carroll, Ibaka, and Jonas Valanciunas nightly.
As for Orlando, they now have two first round picks with their own draft pick likely to become a highly-regarded lottery pick. Ross will provide the team with some much needed shooting help on the wing going forward, as Ross is still signed for two years beyond this season.
Wojnarowski is also reporting that Raptors general manager Massi Ujiri has long been interested in Ibaka, and will make it a priority to attempt to re-sign the stretch four this off-season. Ibaka is making $12.2 million this season in the final-year of a four-year, $49 million contract that was signed with the Oklahoma City Thunder in November 2012.
Ibaka had spent the first seven years of his NBA career with the Oklahoma City Thunder before the Thunder shipped him to the Magic last off-season that helped land the Thunder Victor Oladipo, who since the trade, has signed a long-term deal with the Thunder.
The Raptors currently sit 32-23 on the season as the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference behind the Atlanta Hawks, Washington Wizards, Boston Celtics, and Cleveland Cavaliers. They are 6 games back of Cleveland for the number 1 seed, and 4 games back of the Celtics for the 2nd seed.
Ibaka is averaging 15.1 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, and 1.1 assists per game.
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