Marc versus Pau: Who’s the Better Gasol?
Spain already has a fair list of notable NBA players with the likes of Ricky Rubio and Jose Calderon. But whenever, the Spanish heritage is mentioned in the league, the classic rivalry of the 7-foot tall brothers is revived. Although both brothers got swept by the same San Antonio Team, both cagers are considered as the NBA’s top notch centre forwards. It’s the 7 foot 250 lbs Pau Gasol versus his younger but an inch and 15 lbs heavier brother, Marc Gasol. Here’s a quick look at each brothers’ boons and banes.
When it comes to defending the paint, Marc is hands down a better player than Pau. Although Pau is a decent interior defender, his skinny frame is often a disadvantage considering the league is more inclined to field out the more athletic players. The younger Marc has a bulkier body, which he uses pretty well to cover up possible defensive holes. And to back up this claim, Marc has been named as the 2013 league’s Defensive Player of the Year. Although he does not really rack up numbers in blocks, the Grizzlies’ big man is a strong contender in the intangibles, where he is able to deflect passes inside and strategise easily on finding good positioning inside the paint. He could easily alter his opponents’ shots with long arms and a thick body to cover, which often translates to the Memphis’ good transition offence. You just have to look out how the Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph tandem has stifled Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan’s agile and physical play.
Basketball IQ and versatility
Pau is arguably the smartest big man in today’s league. He is often described as a versatile player who can play as the team’s anchor and also dictate the tempo with his nifty passing. Although he has shown a fair share of his emotional tenacity on the court, he is often a poker-faced player whose focus is difficult to shake. In fact, with incredible grit, he may even make it as a strong candidate for a good poker player. See, like the game of basketball, poker requires a resolute mentality to endure long hours of play. Marc has shown this quite well in the playoffs although it may be argued that his older brother’s experience still beats him in this arena. And like poker as well, Pau makes use of the bluff neatly. With a shimmy to the left then a quick spin to the right, Pau could easily get past quicker defenders with a good bluff and tricky deception skills. Similar to the game of poker, basketball is also a strategic game. Pau has benefited much in this field as he went under the tutelage of Phil Jackson. So, for those planning to be like the brothers someday, you may want to try your basketball IQ first and indulge in games like [partypoker]. In fact, poker is often used by NBA players as an avenue to develop chemistry. This is a crucial part of any team’s franchise so that players develop a feel of their teammates on the court or in the poker tables, for that matter. And of course a little round of the card game is always a good way to unwind in the middle of a hectic season.