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Marc Gasol named to Western Conference All-Star team

First career All-Star appearance for four-year veteran

Joe Murphy/NBAE/Getty Images

MEMPHIS, February 9, 2012– The NBA announced tonight that Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol has been named to the Western Conference All-Star team as a reserve, marking his first career All-Star nod.  The 2012 NBA All-Star Game will take place Sunday, Feb. 26 at the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla. 

One of three NBA players averaging at least 15 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks per game (along with Eastern and Western Conference All-Star starting centers Dwight Howard and Andrew Bynum), Gasol is posting career highs this season in scoring (15.0 points), rebounding (team-high 10.2), assists (2.7) and blocks (team-high 2.23). 

Gasol (7-1, 265) ranks tied for eighth in the NBA in rebounds, fourth in blocks, tied for sixth in double-doubles (14) and seventh in minutes per game (career-high 37.8)  while remaining on pace to break the franchise record for blocks per game, set by older brother Pau Gasol (2.14) during the 2006-07 season.

Powered by Gasol, the Grizzlies have posted a winning record (12-10) over the past 22 games since Zach Randolph has been sidelined with a torn right MCL.  Beginning on Jan. 1 at Chicago, in which Randolph sustained the injury, Gasol recorded 10 consecutive games with double-digit rebounds (Jan. 1-18), the second-longest such run in franchise history.  The four-year veteran is one of three players to put together such a streak this season (Kevin Love, Marcin Gortat).

As a result of his leadership, the 26-year-old earned his first career Western Conference Player of the Week Award for the week of Jan. 16, averaging 19.5 points, 9.8 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.50 blocks on .673 shooting in 36.3 minutes while leading Memphis to a perfect 4-0 record.

The Barcelona, Spain native becomes the third All-Star in franchise history, joining Zach Randolph (2010) and Pau Gasol (2006).

Acquired by Memphis on Feb. 1, 2007 from the Los Angeles Lakers in a package for Pau Gasol, Marc quickly emerged as one of the core group of players instrumental in the Grizzlies’ turnaround, leading to the team’s historic run to the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs.  Memphis’ all-time leader in career field goal percentage (.539), Gasol re-signed with Memphis to a multi-year contract on Dec. 14, 2011.

The Western Conference All-Star team consists of starters Kobe Bryant (LA Lakers), Andrew Bynum (LA Lakers), Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City), Blake Griffin (LA Clippers) and Chris Paul (LA Clippers) and reserves LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland), Marc Gasol (Memphis), Kevin Love (Minnesota), Steve Nash (Phoenix), Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas), Tony Parker (San Antonio) and Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City).

The Eastern Conference All-Star team consists of starters Carmelo Anthony (New York), Dwight Howard (Orlando), LeBron James (Miami), Derrick Rose (Chicago) and Dwyane Wade (Miami) and reserves Chris Bosh (Miami), Luol Deng (Chicago), Roy Hibbert (Indiana), Andre Iguodala (Philadelphia), Joe Johnson (Atlanta), Paul Pierce (Boston) and Deron Williams (New Jersey).

The 14 players selected – seven each from the Eastern and Western Conferences – were chosen by the 30 NBA head coaches, who were asked to vote for seven players in their respective conferences – two guards, two forwards, one center and two players regardless of position. They were not permitted to vote for players from their own team.

The East and West All-Star coaches and coaching staffs will be determined by the best record in the conference through games played Feb. 15. The Celtics’ Doc Rivers and San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich coached the East and West All-Stars, respectively, last season and are therefore ineligible for the honor this year.

» Watch: All-Star Reserve: Marc Gasol

Grizzliesstore.com offer:
Pre-Order your Marc Gasol All-Star Jersey now. Jersey orders will ship on Feb. 17.