Thursday, February 25, 2021
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Saras and Pau meet again



For Alex Molina / [email protected]

Two of the biggest idols of the culé fans will meet again in one of the most exciting years at Barça. Twenty years after being teammates, Pau Gasol and Sarunas Jasikevicius will once again join forces to make Barça champions, one from the bench and the other on the pitch. With only four years of difference between the two, The Lithuanian will tell him what move to make to Pau as he did in the 2000-01 season, the only one that they both shared at Barça and with which they managed to win the Cup and the League.

That was Jasikevicius’ first season and Gasol’s last (until today) at Barça, a year in which, led by Aíto García Reneses, the two played an important role in achieving the double. In his first experience in top-level European basketball, Jasikevicius quickly took the point guard: 14.4 points with great percentages (44% in triples, 55% in shots of two and 81% in free throws) and 4.9 assists in the 37 games he played.

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But Pau … was the star. In his last service to Barça before leaving for the Grizzlies and starting his fantastic NBA career, Pau was the undisputed leader of the Barça team despite his 20 years. The first title to fall was the Copa del Rey, a competition in which Pau simply had no rival. The 18 points, 6.3 rebounds and 25.7 PIR he averaged in the competition fell short of the 25 points and 39 PIR he got in the final against Real Madrid. his greatest display as a Barça player and that obviously led him to receive the MVP.

And after a few months the league was decided: same rival and same end. Pau had no one to face him and said goodbye to the ACB League through the front door. Barça sentenced the league title on the fast track with a 3-0 win over Real Madrid, three victories in which Pau Gasol had a lot to do with it, especially the last one. Aware that in case of victory this would be his last game before going to the NBA, Pau completely dominated the Whites: 22 points, 10 rebounds and a PIR of 37 for Sant Boi’s team in what is his best ACB game so far.

How could it be otherwise, Pau was named MVP of the Final, an award more than deserved for a player who Europe was already getting too small for him. Only the Euroleague is currently resisting the oldest of the Gasols, a goal for which he will fight as they did 20 years ago together with Sarunas Jasikevicius.

Photo: Euroleague

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