Report: Blazers add depth, leadership, sign Pau Gasol


NBA vet split last season between San Antonio and Milwaukie

San Antonio Spurs center Pau Gasol (16) is defended by New Orleans Pelicans forward Wesley Johnson (33) as he tries to score during the second half of an NBA basketball game in San Antonio, Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The Portland Trail Blazers continue to tinker with the roster after reportedly adding free agent veteran Pau Gasol to the mix. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN was the first to report the one-year deal.

The 39 year old Gasol will be entering his 19th NBA season, and will be counted on to bring some much needed veteran leadership to the Blazers front line. Gasol is coming off a season full of injuries, during which he played just 30 games split between the Spurs and the Bucks. He underwent foot surgery in May but is expected to be healthy and ready to go before the 2019-2020 season begins.

Gasol could get more minutes per game in Portland than he did last season, especially since starting center Jusuf Nurkic continues to recover from the horrific leg injury the Bosnian suffered toward the end of last season.

The Trail Blazers have already acquired center Hassan Whiteside in a trade with the Miami Heat to help fill the void until Nurkic can return. Gasol adds to the bench depth and the options head coach Terry Stotts has available. Gasol averaged four points and five rebounds per game, while playing a career-low 12 minutes per contest last season.

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