Kobe Paras ready to represent Philippines at a higher level
Paul Lintag on Jun 14, 2017 08:34 PM
Representing the Philippines starting at the tender age of 15, 19-year-old Kobe Paras is ready to go to the next level as he tries his luck with Gilas Pilinas after officially being included in the cadet pool.
Now officially part of the talent pool for Gilas Pilipinas, Kobe Paras is going all in for the national team.
Forced to sit out the next US NCAA season after transferring from Creighton to CSUN, Paras confirmed his availability for the Philippine national team at least through the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup and Southeast Asian Games in August.
"It's gonna work out great," Paras said Wednesday with regards to his schedule in balancing his Gilas duties and the Matadors back in the States.
"Because this year, I'm gonna sit out because of NCAA rules. That's why I talked to coach Chot, talked to SBP, talked to my dad, and the CSUN coaches. I told them talaga na parang, since I'm not playing, I'll make the most out of it and play for Gilas," he added.
NCAA rules will force Paras to redshirt te 2017-2018 season after transferring from Creighton. As a true freshman, Paras only played 15 games for the Bluejays, averaging 1.3 points and 1.0 rebounds in 4.7 minutes.
And with his "free time," the 6'6" guard-forward will try to make the national team as the third-youngest member of the Gilas Pilipinas program.
"I was excited [after making the pool] just because ever since I was a kid, I was wathcing them [Gilas]. Parang yung last na FIBA-Asia na nag-host tayo, I was watching every game just because the atmosphere and the players, I looked up to everyone," Paras said.
"I'm just happy to be part of it. All the hard work and everything, I put it in. Kasi I started representing the country when I was 15, and I think it's time na talaga na kaya kong i-represent at a higher level," the 19-year-old added.
Before even considering his chances of making the senior team of Gilas Pilipinas, Paras will don the Philippine jersey first as the Chooks-Pilipinas 3x3 team composed of him, Kiefer Ravena, Jeron Teng, and JR Quinahan head to France for the FIBA 3x3 World Cup on June 17-21.
Facing elite competition at the 3x3 Worlds, Paras plans to use this experience as a foundation for the future.
"There's no age limit. It doesn't matter how old you are, basta mabigay mo lahat. I think for me, personally, it's gonna be a great experience," he said of his latest 3x3 stint with the Philippines.
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