Jalalon vows Gilas return after Chiefs' championship quest
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Aug 25, 2016 08:07 PM
FINAL DESTINATION. Jiovani Jalalon wants to take Arellano back to the playoffs before he takes his talents to Gilas Pilipinas.
Jiovani Jalalon will be driving no vehicle other than the Arellano University bus – in the immediate future, at least.
The high Chief confirmed on Thursday that he would not be part of the latest iteration of the Philippine national basketball team that will see action in the 2016 FIBA Asia Challenge Cup.
Jalalon shared with reporters that with the 92nd Season of the NCAA already in its stretch run, he has decided to prioritize his commitment to Arellano. “Sobrang importante nito sa amin kasi ito na yung chance namin na ibalik sa Final Four. Nung nag-usap kasi kami ni coach (Jerry Codinera), sabi niya i-priority ko muna yung college ko,” he said.
He then continued, “Sabi ko naman sa kanya, ‘Okay, coach.’ Wala namang panghihinayang, committed pa ako (rito) e.”
“The Bus Driver” was part of the initial 24-man list for the national team that has been practicing for more than a month. Theh have been preparing for the regional tournament among 10 teams to determine the qualifiers for the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup.
For his part, Codinera said that he was nothing but relieved to have his floor leader for the NCAA’s stretch run. “Natuwa lahat kasi very critical yung next two weeks namin. Naiintindihan naman nila siguro,” he said.
Still, Jalalon promised that he would wear he flag once more once the Chiefs’ campaign is over. “Pagkatapos naman dito, diretso na ako dun,” he expressed.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.