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The Lakers retire Pau Gasol’s No.16 jersey: his numbers in LA

For six and a half seasons, from when he was traded by the Grizzlies until he left for Chicago, Pau Gasol was a key figure for the Lakers.

The Lakers retire Pau Gasol’s No.16 jersey: his numbers in LA
Antonio Martín GuiradoEFE

Pau Gasol was already 27 years old when he joined the Lakers - by then, he was experienced enough and ready to face the mature years of his career. He had a good, solid background in the NBA, where he had played the playoffs three times with the Memphis Grizzlies and had been included in the All-Star team for the first time in 2006. He would go on to be an All-Star three times with the Lakers (2009-11) and a further two times with the Chicago Bulls (2015, 2016).

In Los Angeles, Pau coincided with an exceptional talent, the star of a generation in Kobe Bryant. Like Gasol, Bryant was also reaching full maturity and had moved on from the toxic tag of previous years, which led to a falling out with arguably the best coach in NBA history, Phil Jackson. With Kobe and Pau, Jackson won the last two of his eleven rings as a coach (six with Michael Jordan’s Bulls, three with Kobe and Shaquille O’Neal’s Lakers and the aforementioned two, in 2009 and 2010, with the fabled Angelenos led by Kobe with Pau Gasol as his right-hand man.

Circumstances therefore could not have been more perfect for Pau to exploit his enormous talent to the fullest. The Spaniard established himself as a huge star, growing into what many considered one of the best power forwards ever and won legendary playoff battles, including the 2010 finals, resolved in seven games against the Lakers’ great historical rivals, the Boston Celtics.

Pau Gasol’s numbers with the Lakers

Pau Gasol joined the Lakers on 1 February 2008, traded by the Memphis Grizzlies. He remained with the franchise until 30 June 2014 when his contract ended. A few days later, after assessing his options, he signed as a free agent with the Chicago Bulls.

In his six and a half seasons with the Lakers, he played in 429 regular season games, 422 of them as a starter. During his NBA career, he ended on 1,226 games (1,150 as a starter). Only with the Memphis Grizzlies (2001-08) did he play more: 476. He made 168 appearances with the San Antonio Spurs, 150 with the Chicago Bulls and the three he was able to play with the Milwaukee Bucks, already martyred with a foot injury that left him forced to leave the NBA after a failed comeback attempt with the Portland Trail Blazers. At the tail end of his playing days, he was able to return to Barcelona (with whom he won the 2021 league title) and star for Spain at the Tokyo Olympics - his fifth Games, before definitively announcing his retirement.

With the Lakers he averaged 35.7 minutes per game, almost identical figures to his time with the Grizzlies (35.5) and above his overall average at the end of his career in the regular season (33,4).

His purple and gold numbers were: 17.7 points, 9.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.4 blocks on 52.6% total shooting. Despite playing alongside Kobe, he had averages very similar to those of the Grizzlies: 18.8, 8.6, 3.1 and 1.8. In his NBA career: 17, 9.2, 3.2 and 1.6.

In the playoffs, his time in L.A. did make a difference: 93 games, all started, of the 136 he played in his career (21 with the Spurs, 12 with the Grizzlies and 10 with the Bulls) . His total numbers: 15.4 points, 9.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.7 blocks. In the Lakers: 16.8, 10.1, 3.5 and 1.9 in an average of 39 minutes on court, a very high figure.

These were his total numbers with the Lakers in the regular season: 7,610 points, 4,240 rebounds, 1,508 assists and 877 blocks. And in the playoffs 1,561, 937, 330 and 178.

He played in three NBA Finals, one loss (2008) and two wins (2009 and 2010). With the following statistics:

  • 2008: Boston Celtics 4-2 Los Angeles Lakers 14.7 points, 10.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 0.5 blocks.
  • 2009: Los Angeles Lakers 4-1 Orlando Magic 18.6 points, 9.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.8 blocks.
  • 2010: Los Angeles Lakers 4-3 Boston Celtics 18.6 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.6 blocks.

In his years with the Lakers, he earned more than $110 million. $105.6M between the 2008-09 and 2013-14 seasons and the proportional part of the 2007-08 season, which he shared with the Memphis Grizzlies and for which he received $13.7 million.

With the Lakers, he completed five triple-doubles. One in the 2008-09 season (12 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists against the Hawks), one in 2010-11 (20+14+10 against the Blazers), one in 2011-12 (22+11+11 with the Warriors) and two in 2012-13, also added in five days (between April 12 and 17, 2012): 26+11+10 against the Warriors and 17+20+11 against the Rockets.

In the Lakers’ all-time rankings, he is 17th in points (although he is about to be surpassed by LeBron James), 15th in rebounds, 19th in assists and 9th in blocks.

He had four coaches during his time with the Lakers: Phil Jackson (2008-11), Mike Brown (2011-12), Bernie Bickertaff (2012) and Mike D’Antoni (2014).

According to the ranking carried out by the Los Angeles Times for the Lakers’ 75th anniversary, Pau Gasol is the franchise’s 12th best player. Ahead of him: Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Shaquille O’Neal, LeBron James, George Mikan, James Worthy, Wilt Chamberlain and Gail Goodrich.


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