Mighty Sports ready to banner PH in Dubai tilt

Philip Matel on Jan 27, 2019 08:10 PM
Mighty Sports ready to banner PH in Dubai tilt
Mighty Sports-Philippines will be once again mentored by Go for Gold coach Charles Tiu.

The Mighty Sports-backed squad led by Lamar Odom and Justin Brownlee is ready to set sail for the 30th Dubai International Basketball Championship slated to start Feb. 1.

The two-time NBA champion and the popular do-it-all Ginebra import will be supported by the cast of ex-New York Knick Randolph Morris, former ABL star Jason Brickman, UP's Juan Gomez de Liaño, recently-graduated NU Bulldog Troy Rike, and Jett Manuel. Also playing for the team are former La Salle tower Santi Santillan, Fil-Am Jeremiah Gray, Angelo Wongchuking, former Univ. of Idaho guard Roosevelt Adams, and PBA D-League Finals MVP Gab Banal.

Mighty Sports-Philippines will be once again mentored by Go for Gold coach Charles Tiu. The team last played in the annual tournament back in 2017 with Brownlee, Chris Tiu, Kiefer Ravena, Beau Belga, Jeron Teng, among others. Also in that squad were JC Intal, Ryan Araña, ex-PBA star Willie Miller, and former #2 pick Hasheem Thabeet. That team however did not experience success with only a victory to their name.

"They look better right now, that's a good sign. We are in pretty good shape. But the locals before had more experience. That was our advantage then," shared Tiu. "Imagine, the players arrived one or two days before the tournament. Sobrang hirap nun e. Now, at least we have a younger squad, more energetic, and they listen better."

Odom, who has not played professionally since 2014 and last saw action for the Knicks, had a stroke and was in a coma in 2015 before regaining consciousness and fully recovering.

Tiu noted that the former NBA Sixth Man of the Year has not yet played in a five-on-five scrimmage and hopes that he could regain his confidence that has helped him secure the adulation of NBA fans. "Let's be realistic, even if he has won a lot of championships, he hasn't played in a high-level basketball game for a long time. I mean it does a lot to your mind. I'm really hoping he can get his confidence back. We all know what he can bring and what he is capable of," Tiu added.

Follow this writer on Twitter, @philipptionary.

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