Monday, July 4th, 2011 at 9:00 am  |  14 responses

Pau Gasol: Playing in Spain First Option During Lockout

by Marcel Mutoni@marcel_mutoni

Pau Gasol is the most high-profile NBA star to claim he’d play overseas during the NBA lockout, telling the press in Spain that he’d consider playing in his home country, or perhaps even China.

According to the Los Angeles Lakers’ star big man — who will play in the European Championship in September — Spain is his first choice, but there are other options.

Pau Gasol wasn’t done making news, however, as he also expressed a strong desire to see his brother Marc play for a team other than the Memphis Grizzlies.

The AP reports:

Gasol says “if there is a lockout, Spain would be the first choice — I wouldn’t say only one, but the first” on Friday. China, he adds, has “great potential” as an alternative to Spain. Gasol says sitting out a season would be too “weird” especially as the NBA is coming off a “great year” with the Dallas Mavericks beating the favored Miami Heat in the finals. As for brother Mark’s future, Gasol would like to “see him with a franchise that has better options” than the Memphis Grizzlies.

It will be interesting to see if any of the marquee names in the NBA actually sign overseas, especially in the event of games getting cancelled.

As for Marc Gasol, a restricted free agent this summer, it remains to be seen if the Grizzlies will be willing to pay him if another team swoops in with a monster deal for the rising big fella. Said team owner Michael Heisley back in May: “Marc will decide whether he wants to be here. We will aggressively go after him. He’s a restricted free agent, so we can match whatever’s out there. But obviously if Marc wants to leave, I’m going to have a different attitude than if he wants to stay. I hope he wants to stay. And after what we’ve done in the playoffs, I think he will.”

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  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Wait until around November – January. When the wives, players, and families grow and become weary and agitated. For, the funds shall dwindle due to the lifestyle.
    Now, I do not usually advocate for a person to lose their jobs. And I’m not now. But in my opinion, Billy Hunter is either incompetent, or he is working for Stern AND the owners.
    This is the second time that this has happened on his watch. Does he lack the skills to negotiate? Does he need a voice from the outside?
    It all seems very peculiar to me.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    And, to those who are Americans, and who truly loves America, I hope you all have a happy, peaceful, and safe 4th of July.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Max


  • Jeremy

    Billy Hunter is incompetent, but the owners and Stern are taking a stand this time.

    Have a good July 4th everyone.

    Marc Gasol? not on the Grizzlies… too bad the Grizzlies have a better team going forward than the Lakers

  • http://www.acb.com A l a n

    Gasol added, about playing in Spain or wherever, he wouldn’t like to play half season. If there’s a short NBA season he would play in the NBA and not everywhere else. He wants to play a season, and if there’s one in the NBA, he wouldn’t be coming at all.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Great point by Philo

  • Waggle

    I wonder if Shannon will be following him overseas too.

  • MikeC.

    “I’d totally love to play in Spain, but every good league in Europe is governed by FIBA, and FIBA does not allow for FIBA-governed teams to sign players with existing NBA contracts” Pau did not necessarily say.

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER


  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Another thing, my brethren;
    If the owners honestly AND truly had it in their desire to obtain the agreement that is being sought on their behalf, then why lock out the players now? Wouldn’t it behoove the owners to lock out the players closer to the start of the Season?
    In that scenario, the players would more likely have more of a sense of urgency to get a deal done. Just imagine the owners waiting until August – September to lock the players out. It would have been a stunning AND brilliant move by the owners, no?
    A deal would have gotten done in a quite expeditious and exact manner.
    And we would live happily ever after.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Philo: Isn’t “lock out” just the term used to describe that there is no CBA on the table and thus players aren’t allowed to use the league? I don’t think owners have a say in when it happens, it just takes effect when the CBA expires. Somebody correct me if I’m wrong.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    The owners can still let the players use the facilities even without an agreement, if I’m not mistaken. I’m pretty sure. That would be up to the players, and it would be at their own risk.
    The owners don’t necessarily have to lock out the players.
    But after the expiration of the original deal, the owners yield that kind of clout.

  • hushabomb

    @Philosopher. There’s a risk that employees (owners, managers and staff) risk massive fines, loss of draft picks if they speak to the players either accidently or on purpose. That’s what I’m getting from what commish Stern is saying. And the risk would be magnified if the players use the teams facilities.

    During the 98 lockout there was a story of Bobby Sura (he was on the Cavs at the time) shooting at the Cavs facility and he was asked to leave and escorted out of the premises. He then worked out at a local gym.

    Though if Pau is thinking that Marc is to go well I don’t think so. Gasol, Randolph and Gay make a pretty good front line. Having said that, he’s gonna be a big part of a trade and I think that he’ll be a part of a 3 way or multi team trade.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Interesting points.
    Now, imposed fines due to rules regarding any and all, mistaken or blatant contact with players is only in effect after the procuring of the lockout, no?
    Otherwise, the contact rules are mainly for free agents/pending free agents, right?