One of the best big men of his generation called it a career on Tuesday. Paul Gasol, who suited up for five teams over the course of his NBA career and also played professionally in Spain, announced his retirement during a press conference in Barcelona, the city and club where he started and ended his professional career.
In the tweet where Gasol confirmed the end of his career, the former All-Star big man included a nod to the short film Dear Basketball, which was written and narrated by his friend and former teammate, the late Kobe Bryant.
Querido baloncesto, gracias por todo.
Dear basketball, thank you for everything.
Estimat bàsquet, gràcies per tot.
— Pau Gasol (@paugasol) October 5, 2021
Gasol’s NBA career included tenures with the Memphis Grizzlies, Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs, and Milwaukee Bucks. It was in Los Angeles where he ascended to the sport’s mountaintop, as the team won NBA championships in 2009 and 2010 with Gasol playing alongside Bryant. A six-time All-Star and a four-time All-NBA selection — twice on the second-team, twice on the third-team — Gasol will be immortalized sometime in the future by the Lakers, as team owner Jeanie Buss announced that the franchise will retire his number at some point.
— Jeanie Buss (@JeanieBuss) October 5, 2021
During his NBA career, Gasol averaged 17 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game. In addition to his success for his various club teams, Gasol was arguably the face of the greatest generation of Spanish basketball, as he led his national team to back-to-back silver medals at the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, along with a gold medal at the 2006 World Cup.