Daryl Morey, Sixers stay for jersey retirement of Grizzlies legend Marc Gasol

After a 116-96 win over the Memphis Grizzlies for the Philadelphia 76ers, the Grizzlies honored a franchise legend by raising his jersey into the rafters at FedEx Forum.

Marc Gasol, who played 10.5 seasons with the Grizzlies, had his jersey retired by the franchise after the contest. He averaged 15.2 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.5 blocks while making 3 All-Star appearances and winning a Defensive Player of the Year award while playing for Memphis.

He also led the Grizzlies to their only Conference finals appearance in franchise history in 2013 and is arguably the best player in Memphis history. He was traded to the Toronto Raptors at the 2019 deadline where he teamed up with current Sixers coach Nick Nurse to help the Raptors win a title.

“Really cool when I saw the announcement that they were retiring his jersey,” Nurse told reporters. “I looked down and saw we were here, I immediately hit him on WhatsApp and congratulated him, and said, ‘Man, it’s amazing because we’re going to be there. I’m so happy.’ He was obviously a huge part of our championship team in Toronto.”

Nurse stated that the Sixers were going to stay after the game for Gasol’s jersey retirement before leaving for San Antonio. President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey posted a picture of the jersey retirement on Twitter.

Of course, Nurse has experience coaching in the Euroleague as well. That is where he began his relationship with Gasol.

“It seems like I’ve coached against him for almost his whole career because I was coaching a national team over there,” Nurse recalled. “It seemed like we were always playing Spain for something, like warm-up games or Euro Cup or whatever they were, qualifiers here and there, European Championships, even the Olympics. So, all the way through every level over there.”

When one combines the Euroleague experiences with the NBA experiences, Gasol is an important member of Nurse’s basketball life and vice versa.

“It’s kind of cool to relate to almost, as a coach to go up and see him as a young very young player and then be in this industry, get a chance to coach him, share a championship with him,” Nurse finished. “I mean, incredible parade experienced by him, really incredible, he really had fun. And was just such a good player man just such a good, smart, tough player and a great pro and got nothing but great things, great memories, and great thoughts about Marc.”

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire