Rafael Nadal Pays Tribute to NBA Legend Pau Gasol Following His Retirement

Published 10/05/2021, 11:08 PM EDT


Recently, Spanish basketball legend Pau Gasol announced his retirement from the sport after a 23-year-long haul. Indeed, it was a sad day for basketball fans around the world. As a tribute to his astonishing achievements, Spanish tennis legend Rafael Nadal congratulated Gasol on a fantastic career.

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Gasol retired as a two-time NBA champion, three-time Olympic medalist, six-time NBA All-Star, and a four-time All-NBA team member. He played for seven teams in his 23 years on the court, but his time with the LA Lakers contributed magnificently to his unbelievable legacy.

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Naturally, during the announcement, the 41-year-old Gasol broke down in tears. His reaction showed how much the sport meant to the true legend.

(Orlando, Florida – Sunday, June 14, 2009) Pau Gasol and Kobe Bryant share a warm embrace at center court as they realize victory is certain over the Magic in game five of the NBA Finals at Amway Arena. (Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

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Rafael Nadal hails Pau Gasol after retirement news

Both Rafael Nadal and Pau Gasol have elevated the Spanish sporting world to global recognition. Besides, it is undescribable when a legend applauds another legend.

However, after the retirement news hit the air, both athletes and fans took to the internet to hail Gasol. Similarly, the 20-time Grand Slam champion posted a photo of Gasol on his Instagram.

“A great legend of our sport retires! Much to say, but above all,” Rafael Nadal wrote on Instagram. (Quotes translated from Spanish to English via Google Translate).

 

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A post shared by Rafa Nadal (@rafaelnadal)

Earlier, both Nadal and Gasol, along with Cristiano Ronaldo, invested in TATEL Beverly Hills hotel. Therefore, their relationship beyond the sport will continue to grow.

Furthermore, the Spaniard will enjoy his retired life without near to no regrets from the sport, although he would have adored a gold medal in his trophy cabinet. Notably, Gasol has won two silver and a bronze medal for his country.

What’s next for Nadal?

Talking of the legends, Nadal is not only an icon in Spain but he’s an entity celebrated by the entire world. His sporting achievements and humility off the court are an inspiration to one and all. And even at 35, he continues to contribute to the sport with all that he’s got.

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Aug 4, 2021; Washington, DC, USA; Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates against Jack Sock of the United States (not pictured) during the Citi Open at Rock Creek Park Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

But presently, Nadal is recovering from a persistent foot injury and has decided to rest for the remaining 2021 season. However, more than anything and anyone, he is eager to return to the Tour next year.

Undoubtedly, as fans and athletes bid goodbye to Gasol, many memories come to mind. Above all, he will always remain a portrait of a legend.

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We wish him good luck in his future endeavors. 

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Purav Joshi

1215 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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