Yes, Marc Gasol needs to be more assertive on offence, but there’s still plenty to like about his game

Title: Yes, Marc Gasol needs to be more assertive on offence, but there’s still plenty to like about his game
Date: November 12, 2019
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about Marc Gasol’s passive start for the Raptors, and how a few tweaks to his role can help amplify what’s already a strong impact on team performance.

The middle ground was supposed to offer as much space as playoff defences offered Marc Gasol beyond the arc: A lot.

Arriving in Toronto from a declining, yet higher-usage, role in a poor offence on a middling Memphis Grizzlies team, Gasol had no choice but to change his game last February. He’d been thrust into a far superior offence with an established hierarchy on a team with title aspirations. He suddenly shifted into a much lower-usage, more playmaking-oriented role that nudged him even further away from the post than his declining back-to-the-basket game and the increasingly space-reliant NBA game already had. It was a selfless assignment that suited Gasol the teammate and Gasol the 34-year-old veteran.

And it worked. Gasol won his first NBA Championship and then shifted back to a much larger offensive role this past summer to help lead Spain to the World Cup. With the loss of Kawhi Leonard, it looked like Gasol’s task for 2019-20 would be to strike a balance between the load he shouldered in Memphis and China and the one he accepted down the stretch in Toronto.

Things have not gone according to plan quite yet.

Check it out!

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