Memphis, Tennessee— Memphis Grizzlies President of Basketball Operations Jerry West announced today the team has signed forward Pau Gasol to a multi-year contract extension. In keeping with team policy, financial terms of the deal were not announced.
Gasol, 24, played in 78 games last season, leading the team in scoring (17.7 ppg), rebounding (7.7 rpg) and blocks (1.69 bpg) in 31.5 mpg. He ranked 20th in the NBA in field goal percentage (.482) and 18th in blocks. He missed the first game of his career due to a sore right foot on Apr. 5, snapping a string of 240 consecutive games, which had been the sixth longest streak of consecutive games played in the NBA.
“We are delighted to reach a contract agreement with Pau,” said Grizzlies President of Basketball Operations Jerry West. “His play in the Olympic games this summer displayed his value, while showcasing his talent to people throughout the world. Pau is a dynamic player, and we are happy to have him in Memphis as the cornerstone of our franchise.”
During the Grizzlies playoff series vs. the Spurs, Gasol averaged 18.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 2.5 apg and 1.50 bpg, scoring a team- playoff high 22 points in Game 4.
“This is a very important step in my career,” said Gasol. “I want to express my happiness and gratitude to the organization, especially to Jerry West, Michael Heisley and the local owners, as this is a very big commitment for all parties. I look forward to being a part of the Grizzlies exciting future and taking this team to another level.”
In 242 career-games and 232 career-starts, Gasol has averaged 18.1 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.86 blocks in 34.8 minutes per game. Selected by the Atlanta Hawks in the first round (third overall) of the 2001 NBA Draft, Gasol was traded to Memphis along with Lorenzen Wright and Brevin Knight for Shareef Abdur-Rahim on June 27, 2001.