Pau Gasol will probably play for the Lakers next season, but he might get amnestied or traded. There’s still a lot up in the air for Gasol in the short-term, especially while the Lakers figure out what’s next for Dwight Howard.
Gasol’s long-term future is even cloudier, but he revealed a little insight into his possible plans.
“I don’t know when, but if one day I could return to FIBA basketball, I’d like to do it with Barcelona as long as I can play at a high level and being central to the team.”
NBA players say they want to play in Europe much more often than they do it.
One, Gasol will turn 33 within the month, and he’s already battling injuries that could end his ability to play at a high level if they haven’t already. Before Gasol knows it, his days of playing well could be behind him before he makes a single arrangement to play in Europe.
Two, money. Generally, the NBA pays better than European leagues. Gasol is definitely better equipped to handle the financial complications that often come with European teams, and it’s possible his star power there could earn him a larger contract there, but it’s not necessarily likely.
Gasol was born in Spain, played in Spain before the Hawks drafted him and has represented Spain in international competition. He can also live in Spain once his playing career ends. I suspect he’ll find that enough of a connection to his home country.