Boston Celtics’ Marcus Smart (36) moves around Toronto Raptors’ Serge Ibaka (9) in the second half of an NBA conference semifinal playoff basketball game Thursday, Sept 3, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Boston Celtics’ Marcus Smart (36) moves around Toronto Raptors’ Serge Ibaka (9) in the second half of an NBA conference semifinal playoff basketball game Thursday, Sept 3, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

‘I am one of yours forever,’ departing Serge Ibaka tells Toronto Raptors fans

Ibaka, a free agent, has signed a two-year, US$19-million contract with the Los Angeles Clippers

He may be leaving Toronto, but Serge Ibaka says he’ll always be a Raptor.

The 31-year-old took to social media Sunday to dole out thanks for his time with the team, saying “the love I have received on this journey I will never forget.”

“I’ve had great teammates, front office and staff next to me. And of course, a fan base that is second to none,” said the post, which accompanied a black and white photo of Ibaka walking off the court and into a plethora of outstretched hands.

“So thank you Toronto. Thank you, Canada. And thank you Raptors. I am one of yours forever. #WeTheNorth.”

His message comes amid multiple reports that Ibaka, a free agent, has signed a two-year, US$19-million contract with the Los Angeles Clippers.

The seven-foot forward came to Toronto in a trade with the Orlando Magic in 2017, and played a crucial role in helping the squad win its 2019 championship title.

Ibaka said in his post that he felt “at home from day one.”

“I feel really blessed to have played for this city, these fans, and this organization,” he said.

“It is really a great organization that takes care of its players and I’m thankful that I became an NBA Champion with them.”

In 2017, he signed a three-year, US$65-million contract with the Raptors, cementing his place as Toronto’s centre.

Ibaka averaged 15.4 points per game and 8.2 rebounds a game with the Raptors last season.

He’s also well-known for his off-court personality, the Mafuzzy Chef, who gained notoriety for the YouTube series “How Hungry Are You?” where he cooked unique meals — including fried snake and a sandwich made of bull testicles — for his teammates and other NBA stars.

Hailing from the Republic of Congo, Ibaka was picked 24th overall by the Oklahoma City Thunber in the 2008 NBA draft after spending time playing basketball in Spain.

READ MORE: VanVleet staying with Raptors on 4-year deal

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

NBA

Just Posted

Kootenay Lake Anger Incentive Program wraps up June 1. Photo: Jim Bailey
Incentive program rewards Kootenay angler with $1,000 prize

In catching and retaining Kootenay Lake rainbow and bull trout, fishers are supporting conservation

Map: BCWildfire Service
UPDATE: Human-caused wildfire burning near Castlegar

The McCormick Creek fire started Sunday

Tents set up under the Trail Skywalk earlier this spring. Photo: Trail Times
Message from Concerned Trail Citizens: ‘A Necessary Response’

” … if we are not part of the solution, we are part of the problem.”

“Think on These Things” is a column written by retired Creston pastor Ian Cotton. (File photo)
Think on These Things: Everyone is Invited

“Tell them there is healing, cleansing for every soul…”

Swiss guard at Vatican City. The Pontifical Swiss Guard is a minor armed forces and honour guards unit maintained by the Holy See that protects the Pope and the Apostolic Palace, serving as the de facto military of Vatican City. Photo: Etienne Girardet on Unsplash
News from The Vatican

Pope Francis issued a law decreeing that women can be installed in the lay ministries of lectors

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10 million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen (18) and Calgary Flames’ Josh Leivo, front right, vie for the puck as goalie Jacob Markstrom, back left, watches during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Saturday, February 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver Canucks forward Jake Virtanen sued over alleged sexual assault

Statement of claim says the woman, identified only by her initials, suffered physical and emotional damages

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10 million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

(Kamloops This Week)
Puppy’s home in question as BC Supreme Court considers canine clash

Justice Joel Groves granted an injunction prohibiting the sale or transfer of the dog

Kayak the humpback whale was found dead on a Haida Gwaii beach on Saturday, May 15, 2021. (Marine Education and Research Society)
Kayak the humpback whale found dead on Haida Gwaii beach

Whale was estimated to be only 18 years old

Then-finance minister Kevin Falcon presents his last B.C. budget, Feb. 21, 2012. The province was emerging from the 2009-10 recession and repaying federal incentive to cancel the harmonized sales tax. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
Political veteran Kevin Falcon set for second run at B.C. Liberal leadership

Vancouver MLA Michael Lee announces on the same day

A fledgling white raven was spotted near the end of Winchester Road in Coombs. (Mike Yip photo)
Legend continues as iconic white raven spotted once again on Vancouver Island

Sightings rare everywhere in world except for central Vancouver Island location

Capt. Jenn Casey died in a crash just outside of Kamloops, B.C., on May 17, 2020. (CF Snowbirds)
Snowbirds to honour Capt. Casey, who died in B.C. crash, in 2021 tour

Tour will kick off in Ontario in June before heading west

Most Read