HOF Finalist Pau Gasol Reacts To Spurs NBA Champion Calling Him A “Renaissance Type Person”

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Two basketball icons, Pau Gasol and Becky Hammon, have been named as finalists for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame’s class of 2022. This recognition comes as no surprise to those who have followed the careers of these outstanding athletes.

Pau Gasol, the Spanish-born power forward/center, has had an illustrious career in the NBA, spanning 18 seasons. He has played for teams such as the Memphis Grizzlies, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Chicago Bulls, the San Antonio Spurs, and the Milwaukee Bucks. Gasol has won two NBA championships with the Lakers, been named to six NBA All-Star teams, and was the NBA Rookie of the Year in 2002.

But Gasol’s achievements extend beyond the NBA. He has also represented Spain in international play, winning two silver medals at the Olympics (in 2008 and 2012) and a gold medal at the FIBA World Championship in 2006. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest European basketball players of all time.

Becky Hammon, on the other hand, has made a name for herself in women’s basketball. After a standout college career at Colorado State University, she went on to play for several teams in the WNBA, including the New York Liberty and the San Antonio Stars (now the Las Vegas Aces). Hammon was a six-time WNBA All-Star and was named to the All-WNBA First Team twice.

In 2014, Hammon made history when she became the first woman to be hired as a full-time assistant coach in the NBA, joining the coaching staff of the San Antonio Spurs. Since then, she has been recognized as one of the top assistant coaches in the league and has been mentioned as a potential head coach for NBA teams.

Both Gasol and Hammon have been trailblazers in their own right. Gasol’s success in the NBA helped pave the way for other European players to make their mark in the league. Meanwhile, Hammon’s coaching career has challenged gender norms in a male-dominated industry and has opened doors for other women in coaching.

Their inclusion as finalists for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame is a testament to their incredible talent, dedication, and impact on the sport. If inducted, they will join the ranks of basketball legends such as Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame’s class of 2022 will be announced in April, and it will be a historic moment if Gasol and Hammon are among the inductees. Regardless of the outcome, their contributions to the sport of basketball will not be forgotten.

Speaking of both Hall of Fame finalist, NBA champion Sean Elliott recently spoke highly of both individuals.

“Pau Gasol is also one of my fav guys. During the time in San Antonio we got to know each other. I think Pau is a very graceful Renaissance type person. Some you never expect playing NBA basketball cause he has other interests,” said Elliott.

As for Hammon he shared, “Becky is a force of nature. She’s an incredible person, she got a lot of courage. I got the chance to spend a lot of time w her during her yrs in SA. She as tough & hard nose as they come.”

Gasol caught wind of what Elliott said and replied, “Sean is the best!”

What do you think?

Written by Landon Buford

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