Breaking News: Real Madrid Signs Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka

DALLAS, TX - MAY 17: Serge Ibaka #9 of the Oklahoma City Thunder reacts before taking on the Dallas Mavericks in Game One of the Western Conference Finals during the 2011 NBA Playoffs at American Airlines Center on May 17, 2011 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Update, 13:31 CET: Real Madrid have confirmed the signing of Ibaka: 

Serge Ibaka to play for Real Madrid http://t.co/Xn0sqcB0#realmadrid
Oct 25 via dlvr.itFavoriteRetweetReply

 

Original: Real Madrid agreed to terms on Monday for the signing of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Serge Ibaka. The Congolese-Spanish Ibaka helped Spain win the 2011 Eurobasket tournament, and is very familiar with the European game, having played in Spain for various years. The contract, like the one Real Madrid signed with Rudy Fernandez, will terminate when (if) the NBA season begins; in Ibaka's case, however, he will not be contractually obligated to join Real Madrid after the end of the next NBA season. 

Ibaka is currently in Miami training with other NBA players, but he plans to fly to Madrid as soon as Tuesday afternoon to begin a conditioning and training program. 

As a huge fan of NBA basketball, I'm pretty disheartened by the state of the league: the two groups involved in labor negotiations appear to be getting further apart, while many of the major players are fleeing for European sides.

But, I'm pretty excited about Real Madrid Baloncesto: with Sergio Rodríguez and Sergio Llull manning the guard positions, and Rudy Fernandez, Serge Ibaka and Ante Tomic at the 3, 4 and the 5, the team could make a real run at a championship. 

Also, we welcome all dejected NBA fans into our ranks! Come, join in the Real Madrid basketball love-fest!

Oh, and make sure to check out Welcome To Loud City, SBNation's Oklahoma City Thunder blog--they do a great job over there, even with the whole there's-no-NBA situation. I encourage all our readers who don't have an NBA team to strongly consider OKC: they're one of the most exciting young squads in the country, with the incredibly talented trio of could-be-MVP Russell Westbrook, should-be-MVP Kevin Durant, and, of course, our very own Serge locked down for years to come. (And yeah, this is coming from a Knicks fan--but do yourself a favor, don't jump on our STAT and 'Melo bandwagon now).

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