Pau Gasol or Kevin Love—who would you rather have on your fantasy team, and which big man in his prime is the better player?
It’s like being asked to pick between a Maserati or a Lamborghini; John Lennon or Paul McCartney; Sophia Loren or Brigitte Bardot; Perrier Jouet or Veuve Clicquot; Seinfeld or MASH.
Gasol and Love are arguably the best power forwards in the NBA. Picking the best big man in his prime is totally subjective, open for criticism and, at the end of the day, a no win (or no lose) comparison.
Still, as Gasol and the Lakers get set to take on Love and the Timberwolves tonight in Los Angeles, the question begs comparisons and answers. In fact, we should get a good taste of how the two power forwards fare against each other in just this one game, played at a critical juncture in the season when one team (Lakers) is on a roll trying to catch second-seeded San Antonio in the West and the other (Minnesota) is battling for the eighth and final spot in the playoffs.
Some may argue that Gasol has descended from his prime, but I would disagree. On the other hand, Kevin Love is just 23 and entering what may be a prime window of five to seven years. I think he’s only going to get better and that is a scary thought.
Now that the trade deadline has come and gone and Pau Gasol remains a Laker, I think you’ll see a more relaxed, intense, focused player on the court tonight. He may also, by the sheer attrition of veteran captain Derek Fisher, become the de facto leader of the team.
Kevin Love has fans and followers in Southern California, having played one memorable season at UCLA before jumping to the NBA. His game has exploded at the professional level, and he wants nothing more than to beat the hometown Lakers and dominate in the paint in front of Jack Nicholson and the local faithful.
Read on for a comparison of these two sensational power forwards and let me know what you think.