- Dave McMenamin, ESPN.com
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Pau Gasol and his kid brother Marc Gasol have a unique relationship.
Pau plays for the Lakers, but it was Marc who the Lakers actually drafted with the No. 48 pick in 2007 before trading him to Memphis in February 2008 to acquire Pau.
The 31-year-old Pau will face off against the 26-year-old Marc for the 11th time in the brothers' careers Sunday when the Lakers host the Grizzlies.
"I’m not sure what’s the record," Pau said after practice Saturday. "I’m up, I think I’m up. I’m ahead on our matchups. We usually have better teams than they do. I’m still ahead and hopefully we’ll continue that this year. We want to continue to win and beat them because they got us, I think twice, last year if I don’t remember wrong."
Pau's memory was correct. The Grizzlies beat the Lakers on Nov. 30 of last season, 98-96 and again on Jan. 2 by a score of 104-85 but Pau holds a 7-3 series record against Marc.
Pau's numbers have been just as dominant as the Lakers' .700 winning percentage in the series. Pau is averaging 15.9 points, 10.2 rebounds and 3.5 assists on 50.4 percent shooting against his little brother. Marc is averaging 10.6 points, 9.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists on 42.4 percent shooting against his older bro.
When asked how much trash talk he and Marc exchanged, Pau responded: "Zero."
"We don’t really talk about it," Pau said. "We don’t talk about the game. We don’t talk during the game much. We’re just focused on trying to compete and trying to go at each other if we have the opportunity when we do."
So far this season, Marc has been playing as well for the 3-4 Grizzlies as Pau has been for the 5-4 Lakers, if not better. Marc is outpacing Pau in rebounds (10.3 to 8.7), steals (1.4 to 0.8) and blocks (2.3 to 1.9) per game, while Pau leads in points (17.1 to 14.0), assists (2.1 to 1.7) and shooting percentage (57.3 to 56.1).
Lakers coach Mike Brown has only seen the brotherly battle on tape so far and said he is looking forward to seeing it live.
"It’s an interesting matchup and they are similar types of players because they both are very, very skilled," Brown said. "Marc is a little bit, obviously, bigger than him but I’m happy to have Pau."
And Pau is happy to have the chance to beat up on his baby bro once again.
"It’s an amazing opportunity for us to go against each other at a very good stage, at a high stage," Pau said. "We enjoy it. It’s hard for the one who loses, but it is what it is. We enjoy it. We think it’s special. It’s a special time always."
Ultimately, Pau said the best part of the matchup is simply getting the chance to see Marc during the grind of the busy season because, "we don't get to do that much."
Marc and Pau are so close that Marc actually worked out at the Lakers' practice facility with Pau once the lockout was lifted during the open-gym period that lasted about a week before training camps began.
Even though Pau wants to push is record to 8-3 against Marc, he understands how he'd feel if he was the one who was 3-8.
"We understand that it’s painful to lose and it’s painful to lose against a brother, too," Pau said. "Even though you might be happy for the winner, you still feel pretty crappy."
Dave McMenamin covers the Lakers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter. Jon Stewart of ESPN Stats & Information contributed to this report.
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