One of the more beloved Los Angeles Lakers Pau Gasol may be immortalized in Lakers lore next season.
Gasol spent six seasons in L.A. winning two championships with the Purple and Gold. He was the Robin to Kobe Bryant’s Batman during the Lakers mini-dynasty in the late 2000s and early 2010s. He averaged 17.7 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.5 assists in six and a half seasons.
Gasol’s acquisition in 2008 refueled a franchise spoiling Bryant’s prime, kickstarting three consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals. His memorable 19 point, 18 rebound performance in Game 7 of the 2010 Finals locked him in as a franchise legend. He also became known for his commitment to the team and camaraderie with Bryant.
The Lakers already confirmed last October that Gasol would have his jersey retired. Now, the 7-foot-one big man revealed it may happen sooner than fans think, according to Marc Mundet of RAC1:
🟡🟣 LAKERS | Jersey retirement ceremony
📡 Pau Gasol on RAC1: "The ceremony could be the next season. Yes, I've talked to the franchise and Buss familiy. We are all very excited". pic.twitter.com/PTV9j9nv4N
— Marc Mundet (@MarcMundet78) July 9, 2022
In 2018, Gasol said it “would be a huge honor” if his jersey were to be retired by the Lakers. After Bryant had his retired in 2017, it was only a matter of time for Gasol to be next.
The Lakers have often waited for a player to enter the Hall of Fame before retiring their jersey. That wasn’t the case for Kobe because of his immense impact on the franchise and resume. It doesn’t seem like the Lakers will wait for Gasol either, since his Hall of Fame eligibility will begin after four full seasons of retirement.
It will likely be an emotional day once No. 16 enters the rafters forever.
Rob Pelinka says Lakers “still have more work to do”
General manager Rob Pelinka is assigned the tough task of rebuilding a Lakers roster that vastly underperformed last season. Pelinka has so far signed younger, more athletic players compared to last offseason’s older signings.
But, Pelinka isn’t done yet, stating that more work will be done. It was reported that the Lakers will “definitely” look for more ways to add shooting. The Lakers will also “continue to explore every conceivable option for acquiring [Kyrie] Irving.”
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