Rizal Memorial Coliseum
April 29, 2015
We love basketball.
I love it. You love it. Filipinos love it.
So when we send our national team, which we all have grown used to calling Gilas Pilipinas, to do battle in the international stage, our expectations should always be sky high. Especially now that we’re at a point that our teams are making it to the worlds, not just the Asian stage, in impressive regularity. I mean you probably know that our beloved Gilas made it to the World Cup in Spain and stared eye to eye with the best of them. Our Batang Gilas too. We also have a our three-on-three teams playing ball against the best the planet can offer. Heck, we have a world under-18 slam dunk champion in Kobe Paras.
Pardon Gilas coach Tab Baldwin, the Philippine Basketball Associaton and the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas if they decided to send a team of college players plus an insurance in Marcus Douthit instead of an all-pro team to the 11th Southeast Asian Basketball Association Championship in Singapore. We mean no disrespect to our SEA neighbors. It’s just the big boys are busy right now.
But make no mistake about it, our boys–Kiefer Ravena, Ray Parks, Earl Scottie Thompson, Mac Belo, Jio Jalalon, Kevin Ferrer, Glenn Khobuntin, Troy Rosario, Almond Vosotros, Russel Escoto and Norbert Torres–will get the same result. They will not only get one of the three slots in the FIBA-Asia Championship this year and win SEABA, they’re there to win the SEABA by a mile.
And so far, our Gilas cadet team is doing it right by bringing the basketball apoclapyse straight Singapore with a pair of devastating victories–a 92-36 rout of Indonesia and a 124-37 destruction of Laos.
Malaysia and Singapore, you’re next.
We’re asking your forgiveness in advance. But mark our words, we will accord you respect by playing our game and decimate you both. You accorded us the same respect in football, your sport, so we’re doing it to you in the sport that we Filipinos consider a religion–basketball.
So guys, search and destroy.
Thank you Indonesia for giving Mary Jane Veloso a chance.
Follow me on Twitter: @JoeySVillar
(Photo courtesy of abs-cbn sports)