Marc Gasol named Western Conference player of the week

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MEMPHIS, Tenn-The NBA announced today that Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol has been named the NBA Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, Dec. 5 through Sunday, Dec. 11. This marks the second time Gasol has won the Player of the Week Award (week ending Jan. 22, 2012) and the ninth time a Grizzlies player has won the weekly accolade.

Gasol led the Grizzlies to a 4-0 week with averages of 27.3 points, 10.0 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 1.25 steals and 1.50 blocks in 36.5 minutes while shooting 50.0 percent from the field (39-of-78 FG), 47.1 percent from three-point range (8-of-17 3P) and 76.7 percent from the free throw line (23-of-30 FT).

The 7-1 center started the week with his second career triple-double, recording 28 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in Memphis’ double-overtime win on Dec. 5 vs. New Orleans. He joined his older brother Pau Gasol as the only players in franchise history to record multiple triple-doubles. Gasol followed up with 26 points and a season-high 12 rebounds the next night on Dec. 6 vs. Philadelphia. He then netted a season-high 36 points, the third-highest single-game total of his career, on Dec. 8 vs. Portland.

Gasol finished the week by scoring 19 points and registering a plus-minus rating of +25 in Memphis’ 21-point win (110-89) over Golden State on Dec. 10. The Warriors recorded season lows for points (89) and assists (15) and committed a season-high 23 turnovers after entering the game with the NBA’s best points-per-game (119.1) and assists-per-game (31.8) averages and top offensive rating (115.1).

During the week, Gasol scored a total of 109 points, the highest four-game total of his nine-season NBA career. He now has made 38 of his 87 three-point attempts on the season (.437, 15th in the NBA) after making just 12-of-66 from beyond the arc (.182) in his first eight seasons in the NBA. Gasol and Golden State’s Kevin Durant are the only two NBA players this season averaging at least 19.0 points, 4.0 assists and 1.50 blocks while shooting above 40.0 percent from three-point range.

Memphis has won six consecutive games, tied for the longest active winning streak in the NBA, despite missing five key players (Vince Carter, Mike Conley, James Ennis III, Chandler Parsons and Brandan Wright) due to injuries and owns the NBA’s best defensive rating (99.5) this season. In addition, the Grizzlies are a perfect 12-0 this season in “super-clutch” games, defined as contests where the margin is within three points at any point in the last minute of regulation or overtime, including three “super-clutch” victories this week.