#199. Serge Ibaka Trade: Great for Raptors, Necessary for Magic
We have another trade! I never thought I would see significant trades twice in a week(other than trade deadline). In this trade, Toronto gets the Power Forward they’ve been searching for, while the Magic make sure they don’t get nothing.
Toronto Raptors receive: Serge Ibaka
Orlando Magic receive: Terrence Ross, 2017 1st round pick
Title Contender gets closer to a championship
The Raptors are loosely regarded as a title contender around the league. They are one of the best teams in the East, but they aren’t good enough to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers.
One of their weak spots is at the Power Forward position. It doesn’t help the Raptors that the Cavs have an all-star Power Forward playing for them. Serge Ibaka is one of the best 3-and-d players in the NBA. He is one of the only players that consistently block shots and shoot threes at a respectable percentage. The Raptors best lineups all involve Patrick Patterson, another 3-and-d Power Forward. Patterson can’t play all 48 minutes, so Serge is just who the Raptors need to play the bulk of the minutes, allowing Patterson to come off the bench without a dip in the team’s defensive production. Based on play-style, Serge Ibaka is simply a better version of Patrick Patterson. To get closer to the Cavs, they need rim protection and 3 point shooting. Ibaka provides both of those.
The Raptors still aren’t good enough to beat a healthy Cavs team, but Ibaka gets them much closer to their goal. The Cavs haven’t been the healthiest team as of late, and I believe the Raptors could beat an unhealthy Cavs squad.
Lottery team gets something out of nothing.
The Magic gave up a lot for Serge Ibaka, thinking they were going to be a playoff team this year. Unfortunately, the Magic haven’t one many games this year. If they were a playoff team, the Magic would’ve been confident that Ibaka would stay with the team. With their current record, they traded Ibaka to make sure they get something out of Ibaka’s stay in Orlando. After all they gave up a Victor Oladipo, and the 11th pick in this year’s draft. Getting nothing after trading 2 young assets would be quite a shame. Although they got something out of nothing, it’s still pennies on the dollar of what they initially gave up.