The Lakers will retire Pau Gasol‘s No. 16 jersey on March 7, 2023, the team announced today in a press release. The Lakers will be playing host that night to the Grizzlies, the club that acquired Gasol in a draft-night trade in 2001 and eventually sent him to L.A. in 2008.
After being acquired by the Lakers in that blockbuster deal that landed his brother Marc Gasol in Memphis, Pau appeared in 429 regular season games for the franchise, averaging 17.7 points, 9.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 1.4 blocks per game in 35.7 minutes per contest while shooting 52.2% from the floor.
Gasol, who announced his retirement last October at age 41, played a key role in the Lakers’ 2009 and 2010 championships, putting up 18.9 PPG, 11.0 RPG, 3.0 APG, and 2.0 BPG in 46 games (40.1 MPG) during those two postseason runs. The standout forward/center made three All-Star teams during his time in Los Angeles and also earned a spot on the All-NBA Third Team in ’09 and ’10, as well as a place on the Second Team in ’11.
Gasol will be the 11th player to have his jersey number retired, joining teammate Kobe Bryant (Nos. 8 and 24), as well as Wilt Chamberlain (13), Elgin Baylor (22), Gail Goodrich (25), Magic Johnson (32), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (33), Shaquille O’Neal (34), James Worthy (42), Jerry West (44), and Jamaal Wilkes (52).
Because he hasn’t played in the NBA since 2019, Gasol will be eligible to be part of the 2023 Hall of Fame class and has an excellent chance to be inducted. In addition to his impressive NBA résumé, Gasol also won several medals in international competition with the Spanish national team.