The Toronto Raptors will look to bounce back during the upcoming NBA season. A key factor in their efforts will be to replace Serge Ibaka after his departure to the Los Angeles Clippers in free agency, and possibly Marc Gasol soon, too. Could a trade with the Oklahoma City Thunder be an answer?
It has been a busy NBA offseason for the Raptors. In free agency, the emphasis was placed on retaining Fred VanVleet and Toronto was quickly able to retain him on a four-year, $85 million contract. They weren’t able to keep everyone with the main loss being Serge Ibaka.
Ibaka opted to sign with the Los Angeles Clippers— rejoining his former Raptors teammate Kawhi Leonard. It will be an opportunity for Ibaka to compete with a team who has two high-level stars with a legitimate chance of contending for an NBA Finals run.
Now, the Raptors must replace Ibaka and it won’t be difficult. It’s not easy to find bigs who can shoot the basketball that is not a liability on defense— let alone, a player who actually is a helpful contributor on that end. Look no further than Al Horford, now, of the Thunder.
Marc Gasol could stand to make the most money in free agency by returning to the Raptors. However, if he believes his best chance of winning a championship would occur by departing— Toronto could be left urgently needing to find a center replacement like Horford.
Let’s take a look at a trade package that would send Al Horford from the Oklahoma City Thunder to the Toronto Raptors.