Los Angeles Lakers center Pau Gasol was appointed Tuesday to be the spokesman of Madrid's 2020 Olympic bid committee, according to a report from the Associated Press.
The 33-year-old native Spaniard will address the International Olympic Committee in September at a meeting in Buenos Aires in order to make a final bid for his country to host the 2020 games. Tokyo and Istanbul are also in the running to be the site of the summer Olympics in seven years. The IOC will announce its decision at the 125th IOC Session on Sept. 7 in Argentina.
Gasol, a two-time NBA champion with the Los Angeles Lakers and a four-time All-Star, called the Olympics "more than sport," adding that the city of Madrid could use the boost it would experience by hosting a global competition, perhaps an allusion on his part to the approximate 26.3 percent unemployment rate in the country amid a recession since 2009.SI Wire: Report: Spurs point guard Tony Parker's knee injury not serious