NBA free-agent watch: Pau Gasol

NBA free-agent watch: Pau Gasol
June 9, 2014, 11:30 am
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When it comes to this offseason, the Wizards are looking for size -- in the draft and in free agency. A lot can change, particularly if they lose center Marcin Gortat and can't replace him which would increase their reliance on Nene again.

But there aren't a lot of options when it comes to quality bigs this summer and even fewer when it comes to those that fit coach Randy Wittman's system here in Washington. 

Free agent: PF/C Pau Gasol, Los Angeles Lakers. Unrestricted. 

2013-14 salary: $19.2 million.

[RELATED: Players continue to respect Wittman]

Vitals: 7-0, 227 pounds. 33 years old.

Career averages: 18.3 points, 9.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 51.5% FG. Last season: 17.4 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 48% FG. 

The fit: Gasol is the NBA's best passing big man in the last decade. He can step outside the paint, face up his man, beat him off the dribble or bury the mid-range jumper. He's as fundamentally sound as they come and was able to master Phil Jackson's triple-post offense. Gasol will find the shooters and rebounds well which isn't a strength for Nene.

Chances of becoming a Wizard: Unlikely. The only thing certain here is that Gasol won't be with the Lakers as his relationship with the franchise has devolved in each of the last three years. He is past his physical prime and his stats last season are somewhat inflated because of the high-possession style of then-coach Mike D'Antoni's offense. Gasol already indicated he'd like to return to Memphis and play with his brother, Marc. But a player of his caliber wants to play for a contender, he wants to be wanted -- something he hasn't felt in L.A. since it botched trading him for Chris Paul -- and it probably wouldn't hurt not having an overbearing superstar such as Kobe Bryant to worry about, either. Wherever he lands, it'll likely be out West.