Longtime NBA star Pau Gasol is heading home to his native Spain to continue his distinguished professional basketball career.
On Tuesday morning, the 40-year-old Gasol announced he was signing with his hometown team, FC Barcelona, in Liga ACB. Gasol previously played for Barcelona from 1998-2001 before beginning his NBA career.
“I’m happy to return to the club where I began, and I’m excited about this new opportunity,” Gasol said in his official statement. “I hope to contribute to the first team very soon.”
Gasol has not played in a professional game in two years. His last action came with the Milwaukee Bucks during the 2018-19 NBA season.
The 7-foot-1-inch big man signed with the Portland Trail Blazers before the 2019-20 season, but was released before ever appearing in a game for the club.
Very happy to come back home.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Força Barça! 🔵🔴 pic.twitter.com/6CewIY2Bil
— Pau Gasol (@paugasol) February 23, 2021
Gasol made six All-Star Game appearances during his 18-year NBA career. He also won back-to-back titles with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2009 and 2010.
On the international stage, Gasol has won two Olympic silver medals and one bronze, while earning a gold medal at the World Cup and three in EuroBasket competition.