The Oklahoma City Thunder locked up another key piece to their team Friday, agreeing to a four-year contract extension with Serge Ibaka, according to a report from Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
Ibaka, a three-year veteran, was scheduled to hit restricted free agency following the 2012-13 season. He becomes the third key member of the Thunder's core group to sign an extension. Oklahoma City previously locked up Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.
Ibaka has become one of the NBA's best shot blockers. He started all 66 regular season games for Oklahoma City, averaging 9.1 points per game, 7.5 rebounds per game and a NBA best 3.7 blocks per game. Ibaka has career averages of 8.5 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game.
While the extension is a positive move for Oklahoma City's future, it also raises the question of what is next for James Harden. Harden, the reigning sixth man of the year, is also eligible for an extension and without one will be a restricted free agent following next season.
The terms of Ibaka's extension, which have yet to be disclosed, will determine if the Thunder are able to extend Harden without going into the luxury tax.