What Next for Pau Gasol?

Pau Gasol Free Agent

It looks as though Pau Gasol may have played his final game of his Lakers Career, with the struggling side likely to rest him for the final games of this season.

It’s a shame to see the seven foot Power Forward miss out these final games of the year with a recurrence of Vertigo, ending what has been a miserable year for the Spaniard, who’s dealt with numerous injuries.

But with the Lakers having struggled, it’s no surprise to see them favour parting ways with Gasol at the end of this year, but where could the big man land next year if indeed he does leave L.A.?

Memphis Grizzlies

This depends on what Zach Randolph decides to do with his player option at Memphis, if he opts out, Pau Gasol could end up back in Memphis.

Gasol began his NBA career with the Grizzlies, and his brother Marc Gasol is also based there, so it would definitely make sense to see Pau head in that direction.

The issue Gasol will have here is his desire to challenge for an NBA Championship, which Memphis hasn’t done this year.

Last year they looked like a completely different team under Lionel Hollins, but Dave Joerger, hasn’t seen the same success.

In fact, Memphis are still battling it out for the final Playoff spot in the West, and will most likely go up against the no. 1 seed if they make the postseason.

If Pau does want to challenge for the Larry O’Brien, Memphis would be a bit more of a project for him.

Pau Gasol Marc Gasol

Cleveland Cavaliers

The Cavaliers have not had a good year to say the least, the Bynum experiment failed, Kyrie Irving has been less productive and locker room issues seem to have dogged the franchise.

But despite struggling this year, the Cavs still have a shot at making the Playoffs, albeit a long one, and could have a fruitful summer.

Gasol could realistically land in Cleveland if they come in with a decent offer sheet for the unrestricted free agent this summer.

The same issue of success rears its head, and is even more of a bigger ask in Cleveland, unless they make a serious signing this summer.

Whilst this could be a realistic option for Gasol, it would take a lot to tempt him into a franchise like Cleveland in the twilight of his career.

Charlotte Bobcats

Al Jefferson has been playing out of his skin this season at Charlotte, and if the Bobcats think that Gasol could work besides him, they could go in for him.

Of course next year the Bobcats, or Hornets as they’ll be known, will most likely be looking to make the Playoffs at a higher seed than this season, but won’t be challenging for a Championship.

This obviously again refutes Gasol’s hopes of being on a Championship calibre team, but the move could be boosted if Michael Jordan decides to have a serious discussion with Gasol.

It would definitely make for a scary front court in Charlotte, but Gasol’s hunt for another ring could lead him away from the soon-to-be Hornets.

Al Jefferson Pau Gasol

Chicago Bulls

Chicago is the team which will probably tempt Gasol most, especially with the likes of Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah on its roster.

The major issue here is having Gasol and Carlos Boozer playing on the same team, something which neither player would really fancy.

Boozer has already made his discontent known about his role with the Bulls, which he feels is a diminished one.

But, he’s still going to get paid just under $17 million next year, meaning that he will be a hard player to trade if Gasol heads to Chi-Town.

The other option is playing both of them in the rotation, which would prove a very tricky situation for Tom Thibodeau to say the least.

But Gasol would be tempted by the chance of challenging for a ring in Chicago, meaning he might take a cut in pay and minutes to join the historic franchise.

So, where will we see Gasol next?

Any of these four teams could make a run at Gasol, and theoretically, he could stay with the Lakers, but any number of teams could make a real move for him if they moved some pieces around.

We’ll simply have to wait and see just what happens when the off-season gets going, and the NBA free agency race tips off.

Luke Hatfield is the creator and editor of BouncyOrangeBall, with an extensive knowledge of the NBA and basketball in general.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.