Pau Gasol ready for Kenyon Martin

The Los Angeles Times (Broderick Turner) reports: As Pau Gasol walked down the Staples Center hallway Sunday, stopping every so often to sign autographs, to take pictures, to accept congratulations on his 21-point, 18-rebound effort against the Rockets, he answered every question about Kenyon Martin’s behavior like a man not going to be intimidated at all. “You play through it,” Gasol said. “You raise your aggressiveness level. You’ve got to try to be smart. At the same time, you’ve got to play through it.” Many remember last season’s NBA Finals, when the Boston Celtics’ Kevin Garnett seemed to back Gasol down, when all the Lakers seemed to wilt. Martin tries to be as hard-edged as Garnett is. Martin is a good defender, Gasol acknowledged. But Gasol didn’t sound like someone who would back down against Martin in the best-of-seven series. “He’s kind of like their post-up stopper,” Gasol said. “You’ve got to play hard. Don’t back down. Don’t expect any calls. Try to play through it and be aggressive.”

Author: Inside Hoops has been a world leader in NBA basketball coverage for over 20 years. Read our blog, but also be sure to read our main website on