He was already a legend of Spanish basketball and the Los Angeles Lakers, but Pau Gasol (Barcelona, 1980) continues to enlarge his story after being elected a new member of the Hall of Fame. The eldest of the Gasols, who became “immortal” on March 8 after the withdrawal of the number ’16’ by the Lakers, a team with which he won two NBA champion rings, will be the third Spaniard to enter in the ‘Hall of Fame’, after Antonio Díaz-Miguel and Pedro Ferrándiz.
The ESPN network announced this Wednesday that along with the 42-year-old former Spanish power forward, other myths such as Dwyane Wade, Dirk Nowitzki, Gregg Popovich will also enter the Basketball Hall of Fame on August 12 in Springfield (Massacchusetts). and Becky Hammond. The official announcement of the selection of the new members will be on April 1, during the Final Four of the NCAA (university basketball league in the United States) to be held in Houston.
The arrival of Pau Gasol to the ‘Hall of Fame’ supposes another recognition to the career of the one who marked a before and after in Spanish basketball. The former player from Sant Boi retired in October 2021 with a record that includes the two NBA rings won with the Lakers and a total of eleven international medals with the Spanish team, three of them Olympic. The Spaniard played in the NBA in teams such as the Grizzlies, Lakers, Bulls, Spurs and Bucks, in which he came to play 1,226 regular season games in the competition (1,150 of them as a starter) with statistics of 17 points, 9.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.6 blocks on average per game. He has been an NBA all star six times.
Awarded the 2015 Princess of Asturias Award for Sports, Paul Gasol is the first non-American player to have his jersey removed by the Lakers and the seventh European in an NBA franchise, behind stars such as Serbian Drazen Petrovic, the first of all (3, Nets), Vlade Divac (21), and Peja Stojakovic (16) -both with that honor in Sacramento-, the Lithuanian Zydrunas Ilgauskas (11) in the Cavs, the Frenchman Tony Parker (9), who saw his shirt hang from the Spurs pavilion and the German Dirk Nowitzki (41, Dallas). There’s no more.
The Spaniard is also one of only four players in the history of the North American competition with at least 20,000 points, 11,000 rebounds, 3,500 assists and 1,900 blocks added during the NBA regular season, along with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett. Big words.