Did the SBP just find Gilas Pilipinas' next naturalized center?
Paul Lintag on Sep 10, 2017 02:23 PM
Former Baylor center Isaiah Austin has been tapped by the SBP to reinforce Gilas Pilipinas in the upcoming FIBA-Asia Champions Cup. (AP)
The Philippine national team may have found its next candidate form naturalization that fits the bill in terms of youth.
With Gilas Pilipinas, under the banner of Chooks-to-go, competing in the upcoming FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in China later this month, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) is set to bring in Isaiah Austin to reinforce the squad.
If his name sounds familiar, Austin was the former Baylor center that was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome and was "drafted" by the NBA in the 2014 Draft.
Fortunately, he's been cleared to play since and the 23-year-old, 7'1" center has been playing for the Guangxi Rhinos in China's second division National Basketball League.
With Chooks-to-Go Gilas unable to secure the services of Andray Blatche for the time being and the SBP aggressively looking for his younger replacement, Austin fits the bill, at least from the youth standpoint.
In a report by Inquirer Sports, Austin is set to arrive in Manila on Tuesday.
Another player that will reinforce Chooks-Gilas in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup will be UP's Bright Akhuetie.
After leaving Perpetual for UP, Bright is currently in the middle of his residency that should allow him to play for the Maroons for UAAP Season 81.
The FIBA-Asia Cup will run from September 22-30 Chenzhou, China and Gilas-Chooks already has Christian Standhardinger, Kiefer Ravena, Ray Parks, Jeron Teng, and Raymar Jose.
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