Nothing final yet with Blatche in PBA, Clarkson in FIBA World Cup

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Feb 28, 2019 04:08 PM
Nothing final yet with Blatche in PBA, Clarkson in World Cup
Andray Blatche and Jordan Clarkson remain question marks for the PBA and Gilas Pilipinas, respectively

Gilas Pilipinas has seven months to prepare for the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

And on their way there, the Filipinos are nothing but hopeful to bring along two players with NBA experience.

Of course, first on that list is naturalized center Andray Blatche.

“With Andray Blatche, for now, the most logical thing to do is to still have him on the team and then getting him early,” head coach Yeng Guiao said in the national team’s homecoming press conference on Wednesday inside the Meralco Compound in Pasig.

Team patron Manny V. Pangilinan only shared the sentiment of the Gilas mentor. “(Blatche) has got six more games to play in China and from there, he goes back to the States. We don’t know what his plans are after that, but mukhang libre siya,” he shared.

He then continued, “We should talk to him already so we could plan.”

Just what exactly that plan would be is yet to be determined, however.

It had been reported, first by Philippine Star’s Nelson Beltran and’s Randolph Leongson, that Blatche is interested in playing in the PBA and several teams are doing nothing but reciprocating that.

Asked about the possible development, though, PBA chairman Ricky Vargas answered, referring to the Board of Governors’ emergency meeting on Friday, “We’ll bring it up tomorrow. Wala kaming sagot ngayon.”

At the same time, Filipino-American Jordan Clarkson is likewise still a question mark for the national team. “It’s really everybody’s personal mission that Jordan be part of this team. We’re committed to doing our best to get Jordan to join this team in China,” Pangilinan said.

He then continued, “No assurances, no guarantees. It’s up to FIBA.”

Still, without a doubt, Gilas would only welcome Clarkson with open arms. As Coach Yeng put it, “I don’t think there’s one Filipino who does not want Jordan Clarkson on the team. Ako, personally, wala akong magagawa dun, pero gusto ko, nandun siya.”


Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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