‘FLYING RJ’: A new Abarrientos making a name for himself in FEU

‘FLYING RJ’: A new Abarrientos making a name in FEU
LIVING UP TO THE NAME. RJ Abarrientos will remain as a key cog in FEU-Diliman's title defense next season.

Far Eastern University-Diliman rode total team effort all the way to the championship in the UAAP 79 Juniors Basketball Tournament.

And one of the key cogs in that balanced machine is RJ Abarrientos.

Without a doubt, the first-year player was unfazed by the brightest lights and the biggest stage. “Sa training talaga, pinupukpok na namin sarili namin na kahit baguhan kami, sumasabay na kami,” he shared.

Having averaged 10.5 points and 3.5 rebounds, he, Finals MVP L-Jay Gonzales, and Jun Gabane comprised the backcourt that clearly outplayed their counterparts in Nazareth School of National University.

If his name sounds familiar, yes, he’s related to Philippine basketball legend Johnny Abarrientos.

The 17-year-old is the nephew of “The Flying A” and obviously, the latter is the former’s idol. “Yun po talaga yung pinasok ko rito, para sundin yung yapak niya. Nagpapasalamat ako kay tito na patuloy na sumusuporta sa akin,” he said.

And if he has moves reminiscent of the one-time PBA MVP, that’s because it was his uncle who taught the fundamentals of the game to the Baby Tamaraws. “Nung bata ako, bola na talaga hawak ko and since yung time na nagkakaroon na ako ng isip, tinutulungan na ako ni tito. Siya yung nagturo ng terminologies sa akin,” he shared.

If he has it his way, RJ wants to have the same legacy – in FEU, at the very least – that his uncle had. “Siyempre, dito yung school na nagbigay sa akin ng buhay so dito ko rin gusto makilala,” he said.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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