Report: Raptors eying Serge Ibaka in 2017 free agency

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The Magic just traded for Serge Ibaka, and best-case scenario, he’ll play well for them this season. Then, Orlando will have to fight off outside suitors when Ibaka becomes an unrestricted free agent — and there will be outside suitors.

Start with Toronto.

Doug Smith of the Toronto Star on the Raptors (hat tip: Luke Adams of Hoops Rumors):

Rest assured, at this moment – and all know how things can change – I know a free agent Serge Ibaka is very much on their minds

This is reminiscent of Nicolas Batum. The Hornets traded for Batum on an expiring contract last summer, and rumors quickly linked him to the Raptors. In the end, Batum re-signed with Charlotte.

Ibaka would fit well in Toronto. The Raptors still have no clear answer at power forward, even after signing Jared Sullinger and retaining Patrick Patterson. Ibaka would also complement center Jonas Valanciunas by spacing the floor offensively and protecting the rim defensively. Valanciunas would have more space to score in the post, and Toronto could facilitate the room without compromising defensively.

2017 free agency is a long way off, and a lot can change between now and then. For now, this is just insight into Toronto’s thinking and little more.