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Wednesday, November 28th, 2012 at 10:10 am  |  28 responses

Mike D’Antoni Believes Pau Gasol Can Fit Into His System


Pau Gasol has looked awful in Mike D’Antoni’s offensive schemes so far, but the Lakers’ head coach insists that the big man can and eventually will find a way to thrive. Per the OC Register: “The Lakers coach shook off any notion the team was actively looking to deal Gasol, who is set to make $19 million this season and $19.3 million next season. D’Antoni said the Spaniard is too valuable to trade away. ‘First of all, when Dwight goes out, he’s a great center. You cannot find a center to do what he does for 14 minutes. That is super positive,’ D’Antoni said. And with Dwight (on the floor), he (Gasol) shoots the ball all the way out to the 3. He’s another 7-footer who can guard the rim and he’s extremely smart. So there’s no reason why he can’t fit in. Ideally, do you want a guy like Jessie Owens who can run? Yeah, maybe. But he’s a big part of what we’re going to do and it’s going to take him, like everyone else, time to get up to snuff, (to learn) that change of possessions is ‘go’ and that we don’t meander, we run. It takes everyone a while to get that kind of mindset.’ Gasol has struggled to keep pace in the up-tempo offense, which also has led to trade speculation. He is averaging a career low 13.4 points and 9.1 rebounds, lower than the three previous seasons. ‘He’s unique in the league,’ D’Antoni said. ‘There aren’t many 7-footers who have the skill set that he has. He’s unique. I will never question what he has done.’”

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  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    I don’t think he fits. And whenever they trade him, all any real Laker player, fan or member of the organization should say to him is “Thank you”. Especially Kobe. “Thank you for saving me after Shaq left. I would still be at 3 rings without you.” If you’re a Gasol fan, you should hope that he gets traded to a team where he can play his game. To those people who think that Nash coming back will fix everything that’s wrong with this team…we’ll see.

  • Ben Ireland

    I think Gasol can fit… He runs the floor pretty well for a big, he’d be more like the trailer, Dwight can nearly run like a wing anyway. And it’s not like it takes him 7 seconds to get up the floor or anything. And his passing from the high post, to Dwight down low (or in the air) is invaluable. Gasol’s way underrated simply because we expect such big things from him, if that makes sense. But his ability to fit in and become a 2nd or 3rd option is what makes him so great. Hope we don’t trade him…

  • shockexchange

    Pau is a glutton for punishment. With any other franchise he would be embraced. It’s like the movie “Mo Betta Blues”, Shadow (Pau) wants a bigger role and more respect. However, Gleek (Horry Jr) can only hear his own sound, and anybody who comes into conflict with that gets cast aside.

  • roscoe

    gasol is too slow for the run & gun… and his o-lay D doesnt make things any better.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    Kobe has been very appreciative of Pau (unless its after difficult losses like last week’s). He’s said that Pau is his favorite player in the league (this was in 2009 or 2010) due to his versatility, and recently, when Pau was struggling when Mike Brown was around, Kobe mentioned that fans should be supportive of Pau and everything he has done for Lakers basketball. He also supported him publicly when management kept it under wraps whether he was on the trading block last year. I know it may not seem like it, but from all accounts (Lakers insiders specifically), Kobe has genuinely enjoyed Pau as a teammate, and presumably, friend.

  • The Fury

    I wish he gets traded to the Bobcats so he’d average like 20 and 10 and lead them to the playoffs, just to prove to the Lakers how important he was to them.

  • bike

    Pau can fit if Pau believes he can fit and likes his role. He’s kinda tough to read but it would be real interesting to know what he thinks of the Lakeshow, D’Antoni, and his place on the team right now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rainman1991 Saleem Rainman

    lol man, I know u speak the truth and all, (as u see it at least) and i’ve always respected that, but dont u think you take shots at Kobe at literally every chance u get? It almost DOES come off as hate ma man, even though i acknowledge its your opinion(and one i agree with) . In regards to Nash, I do think he’ll get Gasol a lot more involved through pick and rolls, as well as Howard. Kobe is going to have a part in that as well, pick and rolls and all. Nash is Nash, lets not underestimate him

  • spit hot fiyah

    o-lay or olé defense should matter. stoudamire thrived under dantoni and his defense is way worse that pau’s

  • OEasy

    I’m amazed D’antoni can still get away with saying players don’t fit him and his style. Great coaches adjust how they coach and what they run to their teams. Would anyone else get away with this BS?

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    It’s not hate at all. It’s pointing out things about him that don’t make him sound like the player that some people here think he is. The only people who take issue with me and the others who don’t speak favorably of Kobe 100% of the time are his fanatics. There appears to be no reasonable Kobe or Laker fans here. I have also said numerous times that he’s the 2nd best two guard to ever play. I was here saying that he was the best player in 08 after a lot of guys who used to comment on here thought that LeBron had taken over that spot. I spent a good deal of time telling people that he wasn’t just a role player on those Lakers championship teams when there were those who tried to make it sound like he was just along for the ride. My history on this site, almost 3 years, speaks for itself. That’s why I laugh when people talk about me “hating” on Kobe.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    The Bobcats actually wouldn’t be that bad of a team for him to go to. Kemba Walker, MKG, Byron Mullens, and Gasol would be a playoff caliber core.

  • http://twitter.com/paphe6 frank j. pacheco

    Pau Gasol to the Knicks and Amare back with D’Antoni , GREAT !

  • http://twitter.com/paphe6 frank j. pacheco

    Knicks deserve another RING (only 2) and Pau Gasol is the answer send Amare back to D’Antoni, please.

  • http://twitter.com/paphe6 frank j. pacheco

    Boston and Lakers have most of the rings , give other teams a chance , how about DA KNICKS ??

  • Chrmngblly

    Pau fits great, just not where he is being used now, at the 4. If they move him to the 6 and let him be center and captain of the pine team, he will crush all other 2nd team centers in the league and really give the bench some life and leadership with his passing, shooting and shot blocking. That should give his knees some rest, too.
    Start Jamison or Hill at the 4 depending on who we play. Pau will be 6th man of the year if they do that.
    Who agrees with me??

  • roscoe

    phonetics worked 4 meee… phx never won anything, did dey?

  • roscoe

    amare is worth a buss pass & bag peanuts, not pau.

  • SirGrey

    Reminds me of Amare in NY playing the PF with D’Antoni saying “Just stand in the high post for jumpshots”. I haven’t seen this coach have a good record without playing small-ball. (Amare or Diaw at the 5, Marion at the 4/Amare at the 5 in NY before Melo arrived/Tyson at the 5, Melo at the 4)

  • http://www.facebook.com/rainman1991 Saleem Rainman

    I agree with u when u say Kobe wud still only have 3 rings without Gasol and all..but ayy mann…aint noone bring Kobe up, nor did Kobe have any part in the article…

  • purplerain53

    In response of: “ByAnyMeans…….”

    Sir. I have one question for you. Are you a Lakers fan or not?
    It seems to me, that you like Pau Gasol way too much, so you can’t see his garbage productions lately. Yes! He was a good and valuable player, but in the last two season he sucks.On the top of it, this summer he had to play with the Spanish National Team in the London Olympics. That took the entire summer for him. Preparations, camps, travelings and the games in England.That is too much for 32 y.o.The Pau Gasol of this days is not even close to the guy, who win alongside Kobe his two rings.I can’t watch his miserable defense anymore. Last night, we lost the game against the Pacers, because Pau could not guard a lot shorter player, who bit him in the dribble and scored the game winning two points.That is not acceptable for a player, who takes home $ 19.0 millions this season.
    Gasol has to be traded immediately. Sooner is better for all of us.Amen.

  • purplerain53

    I can agree with that. At least, before trading him anywhere, coach D’Antoni has to try to use Pau as a center with the second unit.A.Jamison is tall enough to play PF with the starters. Jordan Hill is not ready (yet) for that kind of duty.And if Pau continue with his miserable plays as a 6- th man, then after New Year we should trade him.

  • Justin Martinez

    Kobe would still have gotten a ring because Marc Gasol has developed into quite the ball player. That’s all hypothetical but I agree w/ you about bamn taking shots at Kobe. He has nothing better to do I suppose..

  • Justin Martinez

    Who would the Bobcats offer for Pau?

  • Justin Martinez

    Our second unit defense would be horrible if Jamison and Gasol were playing alongside eachother. Trade him to the Bucks, Pistons, or Bobcats.

  • spit hot fiyah

    no championship

  • one alone

    Pau Gasol has not been playing up to par. He needs to get back to practicing his shots. His shots are not clean shots like many of the other good players. They seem to bounce around the rim or the backboard too much. He could do a lot more of slam-dunking to score points too.
    If he and Dwight Howard were the twin-towers around the rim, Kobe and the rest of the team would not have to sweat it at all. Both of them could slam-dunk from either side of the basket. Who is there to stop them? Pau needs to play more like a man and show some power.

  • professorfate

    A little reminder to those who would dust Gasol. Even in a run and gun offense, which Dantoni’s is not (fast pace yes but not the traditional r&g), you never have all five players running. That’s defensive suicide. One player must lag for fast break protection on missed shots especially long range shots. The fastest Laker team, Magic and Kareem’s showtime, almost always had Jabbar trailing. He lagged for defense and because carrying 7′ down the court is tiring. Howard can do it because he is a freak of nature, but there is no other true center in the league who can keep up with an NBA fast break. Trading Pau would be an enormous blunder. Anchoring the second team for 40-50% of the time would put him in the post where he’s extraordinarily good. Using him in spots, especially against smaller forwards, with Howard in high low schemes would be very effective.

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