Happy to have Marc, another champion, won with the Raptors two years ago, who I’ve always loved. Marc has my DPOY trophy at his house, but that’s not here nor there.
LeBron James, Road Trippin’ podcast
LeBron was in a great mood and threw it in as a joke, but it's no secret he is salty about a few awards that didn't go his way. Derrick Rose's MVP is at the top of that list, and Gasol's DPOY is obviously on it as well. When asked about it, Gasol gave a tremendous answer.
Gasol continued to point out Tony Allen as equally important to the Grizzlies defense, and that in the end, it takes five guys for a defensive stop. The way Gasol finished his answer shows he understands that superstars need their ego fluffed every once in a while.
What matters now is next year’s DPOY, and he’s 35, but a player like him can win it without any problems if that’s what he’s missing.
Marc Gasol, Esmaixada.cat
This is probably the biggest value Gasol will bring to the Lakers. LeBron is at his best when there are established veterans ready to call him out on Day 1. With his answer, Gasol made it clear he understands who's team it is, but also let LeBron know he can't be pushed around - he has a career in diplomacy once his playing days are done. I particularly enjoyed the “if that's what he's missing” part.
Toronto recovered nicely with Aaron Baynes, but Marc Gasol's leadership will be hard to replace. This is why he is the most important addition to the Lakers roster this year, despite the fact Schroder and Harrell will probably put up bigger numbers.