04/07/2021 at 8:23 AM CEST
Marc Gasol assured this Tuesday, after the Los Angeles Lakers victory over the Toronto Raptors (101-110), that the only thing that matters to him about the return of his brother Pau to FC Barcelona is that he is happy.
“The only thing that interests me is to see him happy. Seeing him smile is the only thing that interests me“, said in the press conference after the meeting.
“I understand that for you (journalists) it is different, that you see him as a basketball player. But for me he is a brother and the only thing that interests me is that Pau is happy. And that’s how I see him: I see him happy for what he is doing, I see him focused and also very dedicated to the challenge ahead“he added.
Pau Gasol, the eldest of the brothers, put an end in February to almost two decades of success in the NBA, in which he won two championship rings with the Los Angeles Lakers and became one of the most important non-American players in league history.
His brother Marc, NBA champion with the Toronto Raptors in the 2018-2019 season, he followed in Pau’s footsteps this year and joined the Los Angeles Lakers, whom he is trying to help get their second consecutive ring after the one they achieved in the “bubble” last season.
It is not being an easy task, since LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the two great Los Angeles stars, have been out due to injury for weeks. In addition, last Wednesday, pivot Andre Drummond debuted with the Lakers, the one chosen by those in purple and gold to reinforce the interior game and that has displaced Marc Gasol to the bench.
The Spaniard recently admitted that it has not been easy for him to process this change of situation, but the unfortunate start of Drummond, who was injured in his first match, he opened the doors to the start again for Gasol, who has responded with notable performances.
An example of this was seen tonight before his former teammates of the Raptors in a game in which Gasol dominated the paint with 13 points (his highest score of the season), 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 blocks versus 5 losses in 28 minutes.
Gasol also spoke after this meeting about his position after the signing of Drummond and was ready to face this challenge with all the energy possible. “After a few days of an adaptation process, you come to the conclusion that you accept the challenge before you, that you accept it with great enthusiasm, that you are prepared whatever happens. So once you accept this, your energy and your body language change, “he explained.
VOGEL INSISTS: DRUMMOND WILL BE THE HEADLINE
Despite Gasol’s great performance in recent games, Los Angeles coach Frank Vogel insisted that Andre Drummond will be the starting center when he is recovered, something that will likely happen Thursday against the Miami Heat.
Vogel did not mince words when asked if he had changed his opinion of the starting five after these last Gasol games. “No. We will start with Andre, for that we sign him“, summarized.
“The first thing is that we need (Drummond) to have a lot of minutes to acclimate to our system (…). He will be our starting center. But as I have said at all times, we are going to need these three players (Andre Drummond, Marc Gasol and Montrezl Harrell). All three are really good and they are going to help us win the championship.“he added.
Regardless, Vogel did praise Gasol’s game against the Raptors without reservation. “He has been great. His job is to facilitate the attack (…) and obviously he is a first-rate defensive center. So he had a great performance in both baskets tonight“, He said.