According to reports, unrestricted free agent center Pau Gasol has agreed to a contract with the San Antonio Spurs, which will pay him just more than $30 million over two years. The contract cannot officially be signed until the end of the NBA’s moratorium period on July 7th.
Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical broke the news on Monday afternoon:
Sources on @TheVertical: Spurs, Pau Gasol finalizing a two-year, $30M-plus deal. Player option after first season.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 4, 2016
Report: Pau Gasol Agrees to Contract with San Antonio Spurs
Gasol’s contract will take him through the end of the 2017-18 season. He will have a player option on the second year of his contract, allowing him to enter free agency again next off-season if he so chooses.
Gasol averaged 16.5 points, 11 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game last season for the Chicago Bulls. His defensive rebounding (8.9 average defensive rebounds per game) was much improved this year compared to his career average of 6.8 per game in the 2014-15 season. Gasol suffered injuries to his right knee, hand, and Achilles but was still able to play in 72 games this year. However, he was not able to lead the Bulls to the 2016 postseason, in large part because of injuries to himself and many other Bulls players. Gasol was a key component on the offensive side of the ball for Chicago. He looks like he still has a lot of gas left in the tank.
Looking forward, Gasol will still able to be a solid center for the Spurs, even though he’ll turn 36 years old next week. There are reports that Gasol’s knee still bothers him from time to time, but the Spurs will definitely greet him with open arms and lean on him heavily. The Spurs will need Gasol’s knee to stay in tact in order to compete for a championship in the 2016-17 season.
Gasol is going into his 17th season in the league, during which he’ll be 36 years old. He’s coming off a three-year deal with the Chicago Bulls that started in 2014, but he declined his player option for the 2016-17 season, allowing him to leave Chicago in free agency. Gasol previously played for the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Lakers before signing with the Bulls.