6-time NBA All-Star ‘Pau Gasol’ back to Spain to play for Barcelona
Pau Gasol is back to Spain to play for Barcelona, with the team declaring that his deal runs through June 30.
The 40-year-old large man started his professional basketball career with Barcelona in 1998-99, burning through three Liga ACB seasons with the club and playing with the group in the debut period of the Euroleague (2000-01), preceding taking the leap toward the NBA with the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2001-02 season. He was named the NBA’s Rookie of the Year in his first season with Memphis.
“I’m happy to return to the club where I began, and I’m excited about this new opportunity: I hope to contribute to the first team very soon. I want to thank Barça and its technical staff for making it possible to join them,” Gasol said in a statement.
Barcelona’s coach, Sarunas Jasikevicius, was Gasol’s partner during the 2000-01 season when Barcelona won titles in the Copa del Rey de Baloncesto and the Liga ACB. Gasol was MVP of the two finals.
On Saturday, Gasol had denied Spanish media reports that he had arrived at an arrangement with Barcelona, composing on Twitter that he stayed “focused on my recovery and I am not ready to get back to competing just yet.”
Gasol has been attempting to recapture his fitness to be prepared to play in his fifth Olympic Games. He said a year ago that he expected to play this season to give himself a possibility of making it to Tokyo. He is a three-time Olympic medalist with Spain.
Gasol, a six-time NBA All-Star, won two titles with the Los Angeles Lakers in the wake of being exchanged to Los Angeles from Memphis in 2008. He likewise played for the Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs and Milwaukee Bucks and has vocation midpoints of 17.0 focuses and 9.2 bounce back.
He last played in the NBA in 2018-19, finishing the season with Milwaukee.