Gasol’s minutes more than Spain’s doctors suggested

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This is not going to make the Bulls’ fans happy.

We mentioned this in passing while highlighting how Pau Gasol dropped an impressive 30 on Poland to give Spain a big EuroBasket win, but it deserves more detail:

Gasol is battling an injury and Spanish team doctors wanted to limit his minutes — but Gasol would have none of it. From Nikos Varlas at EuroHoops.net.

As Spanish coach Sergio Scariolo revealed in the press conference: “The doctors told me that Pau couldn’t play more than five minutes straight. But after the first five minutes, when I asked him to come to bench he told me now. “I will take the risk”, he answered me and he had an amazing game”.

Spain’s leader led his team to the quarter-finals with an extraordinary performance, having 30 points on 6/7 from the three-point range. And while Rudy Fernandez is day to day and may miss the next big game versus Greece in the quarterfinals, Gasol is ready to play: “I never jumped off the boat and I will not do that now. We play against Greece, I will play for sure”.

One of the points of contention between now-gone coach Tom Thibodeau and Bulls management was minutes and guys playing more than they should when injured. Bulls management wanted Thibs to follow more the modern, Gregg Popovich way of resting guys more during the season to keep them fresher for the playoffs, he stubbornly refused. So Fred Hoiberg is in as coach.

The Bulls aren’t that concerned, reports CSNChicago.com’s Vincent Goodwill.

It shows how passionate Gasol is about playing for his native country. Although it’s not just for Spain, through his years with the Lakers Gasol played through a lot of minor injuries. Kobe Bryant respected the way he battled for a reason.

But you can be sure the Bulls’ medical staff is talking to the Spanish team’s doctors a lot the next 24 hours.