Marc Gasol Opens Up About Leaving the Raptors

The decision wasn't an easy one for Marc Gasol, but it certainly felt right. The 6''11 center and unrestricted free agent decided it was time to leave the Toronto Raptors and start a new challenge with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The deal is a two-year pack that pays Gasol $5.3 million. His reasoning may surprise you, as Gasol admitted he's not the player he once was, and he's not the players anymore the Raptors need him to be. Gasol met with the media and had this to say:

We were always chasing the next ring but I wasn't sure I was going to be able to be the player that they needed me to be in order to win it. I thought the right thing to do for me was to join the Lakers and contribute to what they've got going on.

I told my teammates that remain there - Kyle (Lowry), Freddy (VanVleet), Pascal (Siakam), Norm (Powell), and the rest of the guys, even coach (Nick Nurse) - how much they meant to me, how much they helped me. I'm gonna miss them a lot. I can't lie to you. We went through something together that's very unique, very special, and creates a bond forever. And no one can take that away from us

For Gasol, he heads back to the team that drafted him. After the Lakers selected Marc, he was shipped to Memphis for his brother Pau. The eldest Gasol brother went on to win back-to-back championships in purple and yellow.

Maybe Marc can convince Pau one more year.  

Photo credit:  Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire