The Kobe Paras era of Gilas Pilipinas starts now
The Taiwan invitational, which will run from July 15-23, is Paras' first official tournament with Gilas Pilipinas after the uber-athletic 19-year-old rising star was named to the national team pool by head coach Chot Reyes in early June.
We'll finally get to see just how Kobe Paras plays with the big boys as Gilas Pilipinas officially start the country's title defense in the William Jones Cup.
The Taiwan invitational, which will run from July 15-23, is Paras' first official tournament with Gilas Pilipinas after the uber-athletic 19-year-old rising star was named to the national team pool by head coach Chot Reyes last month.
Surrounded by a talented young group featuring a majority of the Gilas cadets, Paras is not making any promises except for playing his best as the Philippines go for another Jones Cup gold medal.
"I have no promises," young Kobe said.
"Honestly, just because every time we play for the country, we give our all every game. This is the best of the best [Gilas Pilipinas]. These guys, I've watched in high school, lahat sila idol ko nung bata ako. I'm honored to be a part of this team," he added.
Paras, who transferred from Creighton University to California State University - Northridge in the US is no stranger to rocking the Philippine jersey in international competitions.
Just recently, he led the Philippine 3x3 team to the FIBA 3x3 World Cup in France, finishing in 11th place.
However, the Jones Cup marks the official start of the Kobe era for Gilas and Paras is expected to be the face of the national team for the foreseeable future.
"I'm just saying, these guys I've been looking up to," he said.
"It feels great to rep the country one more time. I'm excited. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity," Paras added.
Gilas Pilipinas will start it's nine-day grind on Saturday against Canada.
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