The Clippers have addressed the frontcourt depth issues — in a major way.
Per reporting from Shams Charania, the Clippers signed Serge Ibaka to a two-year deal with a player option for the second season.
Ibaka is the perfect player to fit into the Clippers’ rotation. He is a veteran with championship experience, having won a title with Toronto in 2019. He is friendly with Kawhi Leonard, given that the two were teammates during that championship run. Ibaka has been a starter and a bench player at various points in his career, giving the Clippers flexibility in how they want to use him. He also has the skills to toggle between the four and the five, giving his ability to space the floor and defend on the perimeter as well as protect the paint. Last season, Ibaka shot 38.5 percent on 3-pointers while still converting 73 percent of his shots at the rim.
The Clippers can use him to anchor their second unit and close as the five or even next to Ivica Zubac. He literally fills every need the Clippers could possible have of a big, especially since the team lost both Montrezl Harrell and JaMychal Green in free agency. Ibaka combines some of the physicality and edginess of Harrell with the shooting of Green, all in one package.
Judging by the amount of the contract, it appears that Ibaka is signing for the full midlevel exception, meaning the Clippers will have limited flexibility for the remainder of free agency. That isn’t a problem, though. The Clippers had a primary hole they had to address, and they did it. Welcome to Los Angeles, Serge!