Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
Everyone knows about Los Angeles Lakers star center Pau Gasol. He led a Spanish National team to the 2006 FIBA World Championship. Forced the Memphis Grizzlies to trade him to the Lakers where he teamed with Kobe Bryant to take them to the 2007 NBA finals (before losing to Boston) and the following season he and Kobe won the NBA title.
But it is Pau's younger brother Marc Gasol that we are focusing on today.
The younger Gasol has made huge strides since coming to Memphis, as has the entire Grizzlies roster. The perennial also-rans are sitting in third place in the Western Conference's Southwest Division with a record of 24-19. They are a stunning 17-5 at home in the FedExForum and have won six of their last seven games.
Part of that success is owed to the improving play of Marc Gasol.
Marc came to the Grizzlies from the Lakers along with Kwame Brown, guard Javaris Crittenton, guard Aaron McKie and first round picks in 2008 and 2010. Although the team has jettisoned the other three players in the deal, Gasol is turning into a top-notch center.
The 7'1" Spaniard has improved in almost every fantasy category this season. His points are up from 11.9-to-14.8 ppg, rebounds from 7.4-to-9.6 rpg and assists have risen from 1.7-to-2.2 apg. He's playing more minutes, shooting better from the field and blocking more shots.
In fact, his numbers are starting to approach those of his more well-known brother. They're not there yet, but Pau is a 30-year-old, nine-year veteran of the NBA and Marc is just 24-years-old (he'll be 25 on January 29th) and in his second NBA season.
Luckily for Marc, he's on a very young team (starters average 23.8-years-old) which could afford to let him learn on the court instead of in the practice gym. He along with Mike Conley, O.J. Mayo, Rudy Gay and Zach Randolph could be the nucleus of the team for the next few years.
Marc Gasol is owned in 91% of all leagues, but might still be available through trade if your competition hasn't been paying attention to the growth of his game.
|2009-10 Gasol Brothers Statistics|