The Los Angeles Lakers traded veteran center Marc Gasol, a 2024 second-round pick and $250,000 in cash to the Memphis Grizzlies this week in return for the draft rights to Wang Zhelin.
All signs point to the 36-year-old ultimately being granted a release and staying in Spain going forward.
The Lakers owed Gasol $2.7 million for next season, but it quickly became apparent this summer that he would not suit up in purple and gold this year.
After the DeAndre Jordan signing, and Dwight Howard’s subsequent response to it, the writing was on the wall in regards to Gasol’s future.
It is something of an open secret that the Lakers had a difficult time getting on the same page as Gasol. He has spoken rather openly over the past year about how disappointed he had been with his short stint in LA. As recently as last week, he began expressing a lack of interest in returning to the Lakers.
That proved to be the breaking point.
“Following the DeAndre Jordan acquisition, [the] writing was on the wall for Marc,” wrote Kyle Goons of the Southern California News Group. “One characterization I heard last week was the Lakers were waiting for a sign that Gasol was invested and excited to play another season with them. They were linked to Jordan soon after.”
Dak Prescott stays winning. https://t.co/WN2voiN8k7
— Game 7 (@game7__) September 11, 2021
Obviously this is a sad way for Gasol’s time in LA to end, but it seems like both parties were ultimately responsible for the decision.
Hopefully going forward this entire dust-up doesn’t impact the Lakers’ relationship with Pau Gasol – who is an undeniable legend and an important figure in the franchise’s modern day championship lore.