In years past, Memphis center Marc Gasol likely never would have been even considered for, let alone won, the Defensive Player of the Year award.

He is neither muscle-bound nor noticeably athletic. He doesn’t block shots (1.7 per game) or rebound (7.8 per game) at particularly impressive rates.

And yet, with the advent of advanced statistical measures, we have new opportunities to understand just how effective a player of Gasol’s subtle skills can be.

A sampling:

* The Grizzlies gave up 6.8 fewer points per 100 possessions when he is on the court.

* Opponent field goal percentage dropped by 1.5 points overall, and 2.3 points at the rim, when he is on the court.

* He ranked among the league’s best defenders in isolation, post up and pick and roll man plays, per Synergy Sports.

* His counterparts shot 38.4 percent from the floor.

With Gasol anchoring the works, Memphis ranked second in defensive efficiency at 97.4 points allowed per 100 possessions, and third in opposing field-goal percentage at 43.5.

Even so, Dwight Howard and Kendrick Perkins scoffed at Gasol’s selection, with the latter accusing the NBA of giving awards away. Howard’s perplexed expression said about the same thing.

They weren’t alone.

Hall of Fame writer Mark Heisler took to Twitter after Gasol finished third among centers in the coach’s vote for the All-Defensive team to mock the media members who selected him DPOY as “lemmings.”

But considering Tyson Chandler’s Knicks ranked 18th in defensive efficiency, and Joakim Noah missed 16 games — roughly 20 percent of the schedule — perhaps Heisler was criticizing the wrong party.