RUMOR: Lakers could be interested in Serge Ibaka in free agency
The Los Angeles Lakers won the 2020 NBA Championship. However, that does not guarantee anything next year. It always helps to add some pieces in the offseason, and that’s apparently exactly what the Purple and Gold plan to do.
“From a personnel standpoint, he is exactly the kind of combo big guy that team (the Lakers) needs,” an anonymous NBA general manager told Heavy.com. “They have had interest in him before and they will again. When he is healthy he is an excellent spot starter at the 5 (center) and the 4 (power forward). He is as good a bench big guy as there is in the league. He was a really credible 3-point threat last year. If he is willing to accept what the Lakers can afford to give him, I know they would want him.”
Defending a championship is not easy, especially considering the setup of the upcoming season.
There is not nearly the same amount of time this offseason as there normally would be. That means that teams that made the playoffs have even less time to recover. Being the champions, the Lakers (and the Miami Heat whom they defeated in the Finals) have the shortest recovery period.
With that in mind, getting some extra depth is important. That is where Serge Ibaka comes into play, as he would be an absolutely massive get for the Lakers.
Outside of Anthony Davis, Los Angeles is not exactly stacked when it comes to big men. Dwight Howard and Javale McGee have their moments. However, both are question marks that can give them a good game or be virtually invisible at any given moment.
Ibaka actually averaged a career-high in points per game with 15.4 last season with the Toronto Raptors. He also had his second-highest rebounds per game number (8.2) and set a new best with 1.4 assists.
The blocks per game were down to 0.8 (career 2.1 per contest), but he is still certainly a defensive threat down low.
Meanwhile, Ibaka’s solid post game and ability to stretch the floor (38.5 percent from deep last season) make him a very useful weapon to have.
Many will argue that Ibaka never reached his full potential. However, he has certainly carved out a great career and is one of the better free agents on the market this offseason. If the Lakers can manage to scoop him up, that would definitely add to their repeat chances.