Veteran big man Pau Gasol had recently signed with the San Antonio Spurs for a two-year $30 million deal. With Tim Duncan retired, Gasol will have to try to fill that big gap left by the superstar. Recent reports revealed that Gasol declined the Spurs two years ago for a chance to play for Coach Gregg Popovich and chose the Chicago Bulls instead.
“Two years ago I declined the option of going to the Spurs. Now it was the right time to go to San Antonio,” he revealed in an interview. “Popovich has he told me that I will contribute a lot and along with LaMarcus Aldridge, without Tim Duncan any more, I will be one of the leaders of the team in the front line.”
According to Talk Basket, it seemed like the idea of being a possible fiddle to Duncan didn’t sit right with Gasol, who is the Eurobasket 2015 MVP and considered one of the best international players in the NBA.
When Gasol became a free agent after playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, he decided to bring his talents to Chicago picking the Bulls over the Spurs. In a post published by Uproxx, Gasol declined the Spurs most likely because at that time, Duncan and Tiago Splitter were still playing for the Spurs.
When asked what’s his take on playing his final years in Spain, Gasol said: “While still playing in the NBA, my chances of returning to FC Barcelona are reduced. It’s a nice idea, but becoming less and less possible. My hope of playing for the national team remains the same, evaluating it year by year and analyzing how my body adapts to the workload.”
Photo courtesy: Klearchos Kapoutsis/Flickr