Category Archives: #basketball

FIBA WC 2023 – PHI-JAP-IND

“The Power of Three” and “Play It Louder Than Ever.”

The end of the year just painted the widest smile in every hoops fans in these three countries as  FIBA Central Board officially announced and formally endorsed it to the world. Excitement envelope our heart as we try to imagine things come 2023 ! that’s six full years and we collectively look at the line up of potential candidate to don the national colors from the ranks of junior to senior high varsity teams and the remaining strength of those young guns in the current team.

The announcement just fuel up the programs for basketball leagues, to find great talent, to train harder with a great length of time for preparation and gone is the reason of short training, jiving up, cohesion and whatever you may want to call it.

Were hoping that there’ll be no game of politics along the way but pure solid support for the team, the lack of long term program thinking must shelve and create a committee of professionals to attend to the rigors of preparation, programs, training’s, player selection, and others.

So who are your team for the coming 2023 FIBA World Cup ? Bear in mind that they should be able to withstand a long term commitment, sacrifices and dedication with one full goal and that is to win the coveted gold and eventually see our flag in the Olympics.

Name your team and lets start a very good conversation till the national team evolves into one of the most best formed team in the history of Philippines Basketball Team.

My first take is to have KAI SOTTO start training exclusively in the US under the trainer of Giannis Antetokounmpo ! – Paquito 

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How a Sacrifice won a Championship

The Philippine Basketball Association’s Philippine Cup was won by the powerhouse San Miguel Beermen with 4-1 of the best of seven series. What was significant for this series are three things. The perpetual trophy, the runner up’s huge following with their never say die spirit and the back to back finals MVP, SMB point guard Chris Ross.

After receiving his MVP award from Cignal HD representatives, he was asked for some words for the PBA fans especially those rooting for San Miguel Beermen. He goes on to say that it was through great sacrifices of each fifteen members of the team that made it possible…to achieved two things… one in winning the championship trophy and next is why he won the MVP in a back to back fashion. And that everybody made the needed adjustment for him to be in a position to contribute more in scoring, share the ball more often and run the floor in a seamless offensive manner that made the team’s dynamism as a force to reckon with  and maximize their unique potentials both inside the paint and beyond the arc positions in beating the crowd favorite Ginebra San Miguel.

A team built around sacrifices has a greater chance of winning a championship.  – Paquito

Winning Basketball Games thru God’s Words

Quezon City, Philippines Wednesday October 26, 2016

Our beautiful country is a home of one of the most popular sports in the world, basketball. Most of the locals learned to play in some makeshift goal right in the middle of a busy streets, rough road alleys and even water submerged places you can find a set of board and a rim with plastic straws attached as it’s nets to give justice to the game. Summer leagues including school intrams, college basketball like the UAAP and the NCAA serves as the talent training and honing ground for those aspiring amateur and professional basketball players in the future. Not to be outdone are those who truly love the game that they  chose to play some pickup games in every hard court available in the land day and night.

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Rio Olympic Boxer Charly C. Suarez  said God is number 1 ! Shown here with Team Jesus

Every Wednesday evening the JCSGO Christian Ministries opens its basketball facilities to all ages who wanted to play the game with those regular members of the ministries. The evening were running its normal course when a very familiar man entered the court dressed to the occasion and did some little warm ups and exchanged high fives with every player inside the gym, Rio Olympian boxer Charly C. Suarez a native of Davao firstly said “I am also a fan of Jesus and servant of Christ!” and he unleashed his game to the delight of the crowd.

It was a very unforgettable experience for almost all of those who played the game as it is with greatest pride and honor to be on the same court with an Olympian who did shared his testimonies and heavenly experiences under the grace of God. He humbly spoke about his past struggles and challenges prior to making it to the Philippine Olympic Team. Every word he uttered significantly stresses the need to be humble and dedication of every work, practice, training and actual competition to the glory of God. the Olympian is a boxer by profession and preacher by the heart.

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The Blogger, Lawrence Aquino, Russel Yaya and Olympian Charly Suarez seen here with the very supportive  JCSGO Ministries Brother. 

Apart from this former Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals shooting guard NCAA mainstay Russel B. Yaya also participated in the game who is also a number one fan of God. We have completed three full 20 minutes games and by God’s grace added and improved our body stamina, endurance and skills within the bounds of sportsmanship.

“Seek Yee First the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness and All these things shall be Added Unto You” Matthew 6:33 – Charly Coronel Suarez

God never ceases to guide a man who dedicated his passion to the gift he received. – Paquito

The 5 Lesson’s We Learned from the “never say die” Spirit of Barangay Ginebra’s Buzzer Beater Winning Moment

The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel captured the PBA Governors Cup  in a thrilling buzzer beater with a perfect picture any player always dream of, which is a rare ending in a pro league. With the score tied at 88 all, under a 5.5 seconds into the final regulation in front of a jam packed Smart Araneta Coliseum crowd of 22,528, GSM import Justine Brownlee took the inbound pass from Sol Mercado and calmly sank a shot behind the arc just an inch from the stretched arms of Meralco Bolts’ import Allen Durham-the best import awardee and with the time running out, it was all faith over matter that the ball hit nothing but net that again saw and heard the loudest roar of the crowd since the Thrilla in Manila and Gabriel “Flash” Elorde’s  knocked out win over Harold Gomes as it  took more than eight years for the team and its die hard fans to win a championship. The Fans are the never say die followers ever since it was brought about by the Big J Sonny Jaworski.

People always look for a brotherhood that have the same or synonymous reasons, it was in the game the Filipino people dearly loved which is basketball. Behind every game a thousand of stories can be heard, behind every player and a team a thousand of following can be seen. But there is this something extra ordinary about them being a “never say die” fan who thrives not only for the game but for their daily life challenges. There is this charisma that truly unites the fans whatever his/her status in life he/she have. That charisma is what makes the Filipino basketball fans different form any sports fan in the country even the world. Let me share to you the lesson’s I’ve seen during the series not only through observation but in all forms of media that best describes the Ginebra NSD spirit.

  1. They come in full force, even if the actual seat location is as far as General Admission they throw their support without any reluctance.
  2. They chant in unison, roaring like a fearless lion in the jungle with just the same tune, noise and never say die conviction.
  3. They share the feelings, if the team lose they’re really showing their true emotions anywhere, inside the bus going home after the game, trains and some walk their way home just to show their unique support all the way.
  4. They really makes their presence felt inside the venue, acting like the sixth man on the floor creating motivation for the entire team to play their best even if they’re down by a dozen. That created the x-factor of the championship series and all will agree to it, ask them.
  5. Die hard fans are a mix of the old and the young ones, aficionado’s  as old as nearly centenarians are still rooting it all for Ginebra, they still have that fire of adoration and support to the Big J, who himself had made the life possible for those aspiring to be the best that they can be. Simply by saying, It ain’t over till it’s over even if the shot clock is less a second in the final buzzer. That’s the spirit he have had shared a thousand times to the fans whatever their life status maybe.

My take on this is very simple, never give up if there is still an ounce of time remaining in the situation you are right now. Remember as what The Big J has said before that it ain’t over till its over and the spirit must always be the never say die attitude to make an insurmountable challenges become possible and doable just like the way Justine Brownlee sank the trey with only one thing in mind, the will to win.

Always put yourself into the winning line instead of a losing curve. – Paquito

 

Blockbuster James Yap / Paul Lee Trade !

The Filipino basketball fans are now in for another surprised deal  between Rain or  Shine and the Star Hotshots, trading or having swapped marquee players with both claimed as this is beneficial to their respective teams. Many are wondering and giving their unsolicited opinion including this blogger in the spirit of the freedom of the expression notion and to keep the happening on reality check if there is a winner or loser with the latest trade. But i tell you this my dear fellow blogger and basketball fan, It is us, the PBA fans who are the real winner in this deal.

With the latest development, we are about to witness the athleticism and never before seen skills of these basketball stars as they’re about to show to their new team their basketball intelligence quotient while fitting in with the respective system to bring it into another round with the medal games. Rejuvenation is the word am gonna used for this spectacular trade that most of the newspaper have written as a sort of a fiction since it really never came into their mind that this will gonna happen, and it did. As a fan we should never forget that trading players is one of the exciting part of the team, player and basketball patrons to watch out for as it is a decision being made beneficial for the organizations growth and future hold in the commercial dimension. Marketing and its marketers must agitate the intelligent minds of its patron.

Seeing James Yap and Jeff Chan burning hoop nets from all angles of the court is great and fun to watch thus transforming the Rain or Shine team a gunner team while for the Star Hotshots is it does gonna make them a Guard-Trifecta with Mark Barroca, Peter Jun Simon and Paul Lee trading no look passes and leaving a man open in the middle for an easy floater. These made the teams more dangerous and a solid competitor in the coming opening of the next PBA season starting 2017.

I still believe that basketball is a team effort game not only inside the hard-court but also in the back office. Team managers spend a lot of cross matching and shadow combination analysis to perpetuate the right mixture of basketball excellence and with the latest swapped there is no denying that all is happening for a purpose that’ll put all the people involve into a better situation and condition and the most important of all, the basketball fans . Kudos to James Yap and Paul Lee and also to their new teams.

Trading is an old proven way of business to get the best of the deal parallel to each pressing needs. – Paquito

USA Dream Team FORMALIZED GOLD at Rio 2016 Olympics Men’s Basketball game, Demolished Serbia Team Final Score 96-66

The team USA entered the game focused, skilled and smarter with the planned strategies. Coach Mike Krzyzewski’s game plan made the Serbian team paid for it, applying the trojan horse technique effectively masking early in the First quarter lead of Serbia by sending their bigs in foul trouble paving the way inside the paint a bit wide easier for the USA team offensive attack.  Serbia stayed in the game till the early Second quarter until the US started launching points after points and slowly put away the Serbians on their way to its 25th olympic basketball game consecutive win.

As advertised prior to the opening of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, Kevin Durant showcased what he got by scoring a total of 30 points on a 10/19 field goals and 5/11 at three point line in a little over 30 minutes of playing time contributing a point in every minute and showed why he was the highest paid athlete in the 2016 Rio Olympics beating Serbia with a final score of 96 – 66 as traditionally done ever since the pros were allowed to compete in the most important games in the history held every four years. Demarcus Cousins held his own inside the paint scoring 13 points and grabbed a huge 15 rebounds against Serbia’s Miroslav Raduljica, Nikola Jokic, Milan Macvan, Vladimir Stimac and Nikola Kalinic who fouled out of the game in the early half.

Defense played a big factor in this US dream team win as Serbia’s gunner Milos Teodosic were limited to only 11 field goal attempts for  messy 9 total points far from his 22 points performance against Australia in the semis game, the same with Miroslav Raduljica. The final game were witnessed by a total of 10, 658 sports fans inside the Carioca Arena 1, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. And the US dream team once again shouted to the world who’s the best in the basketball planet that even Zika virus took a resounding backseat with a victory more meaningful for the USA where the game originated 125 years ago.

And the Star Spangled Banner were raised to its designated place on top of Serbia and Spain who finished Silver and Bronze medals respectively. Team to watch in 2020 Tokyo Olympics is Serbia, the youngest basketball team in the competition who made it to the olympics via a Qualifying Tournament and winning against China and Venezuela in the preliminaries and knocked out Lithuania and Australia, but that needs to be seen as the US Dream Team will surely field their best and protect its status as the best basketball team in the world.

Mastery requires patience, Victory requires respect. – Paquito

 

Serbia LAMBASTED Australia! Will play USA in Rio 2016 Olympic Men’s Basketball Finals Game

True to its form and substance, basketball is a game of the giants! The Serbian basketball team embarrassed the Australian Boomers behind guard Milos Teodosic 22 points, 5 assists for a 64%  field shooting percentage and a team effort big performances from Stefan Markovic, 14 points; Miroslav Raduljica, 11 points and Milan Macvan 12 points  contrary to 7 total points combined of NBA star of their own andrew Bogut and Matthew Dellavedova losing with a score of 87-61.

The first 2 quarters alone gave the Australian Boomers a doubly hard challenge as they were able to score a petty 14 points, 5 in the First Quarter and 9 in the Second. It was the pesky defense thrown at every possession by the Serbians and their patience in executing their offense that sealed the deal and a date with the USA Dream Team in the much awaited battle for Gold tomorrow at Carioca Arena 1 .

Serbia coach Sasha Djordjevic couldn’t be happier as he was able to bring the team after 20 years to the medal game of the olympics, 1996 is the last time Serbia played for medal game. Their victories against eliminated China and Venezuela in the elimination round and a 26 point win from Lithuania paved its way to get this far and eventually landed in the prestigious Finals game assuring them of Silver finish if they lose to USA.

It will gonna be rough and a bit physical based on their elimination match up and we are all in for the best Olympics basketball finals since the USA Dream Team is playing its toughest defense and explosive offensive prowess inside and outside the shaded lane.

Always never underestimate an opponent, for in losing they’ve become stronger than you’ve expected. – Paquito

USA Outplayed Spain 82-76 Rio 2016 Olympic Men’s Basketball Semis game

BOTH TEAMS coaches, USA’s Mike Krzyzewski and Spain’s Sergio Scariolo played their cards well using 10 man rotation of players on the USA Dream Team side,  Demarcus Cousins fouled out of the game with 31.5 seconds left in the 3rd quarter. An improved spacing inside the paint ended the Spain’s dominance of the interior, and the USA using time outs strategically to ensure the superstars are on the track of the Mission Rio-Gold demolished Spain with  a final score of 82 -76 after an intense and closed calls ensuing the final period.

USA outrebounded Spain, 53 -41 with De Andre Jordan grabbing a game high 16 caroms and blocked most of the important shots attempted by the spanish players at 6 – 1. Pau Gasol silently led his team with 23 points and 8 rebounds while Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson scored a total of 22 on 50% field goal shooting with 12 points coming from the three point territory in his 35.11 minutes playing time. And with their sight set on the looming rematch with the Australian Boomers, Draymond Green were used sparingly and Harrison Barnes and Demar De Rozan were kept on the bench to enter the Gold game with the freshest legs.

Spain could have a chance to cut the lead to 7 coming from a dunk by Nikola Mirotic but Sergio Rodriguez layup ended in an offensive foul after he made a contact with De Andre Jordan in the face sending Jordan to the bench and saw their chance to bubble bursts after Kevin Durant scores on  layup to 11 points, 80 -69 with 1:43 left in the final canto. USA held on to their defensive prowess keeping the spaniards door to the finals finally closed as actually seen by the 10,455 spectators inside the Carioca Arena 1 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. USA will play the winner between Australia and Serbia with a scheduled tip off at 6:00 am.

In any sport or game, the team that shows the better desire, discipline and defense strategies ended up glorious and victorious – Paquito

Who’s your Pick for the Men’s Basketball Finals Game in Rio 2016 Olympics

As expected the USA Dream Team ended the preliminaries with a perfect record in a never perceived fashion with 3 close games against Australia, Serbia and France. While Australia if we are to consider the loss to US as a given factor also showed what it takes to have a crack to the Gold or a consolation Silver finish.

On the other end of the court, Argentina and Lietuva have been lording it over the other protagonist with Spain recovering just in time should never be taken out of the equation as favorites with the quarterfinals format of knock out system could change the intensity and type of plays these teams could put up against every opponent.

The warm up is over and as the basketball fans around the world said this is the real game we are waiting for with stricter defense, more hustles, raining treys and knee breaking crossovers and also were in for the fist-slamma-jamma alley oop dunks! And this equates to greatness and pride to take hold of who’s who in the hoop kingdom around the world.

So who’s your pick? (send me an email of your prediction by writing your comments below after this article) 

Are we going to see a repeat of US vs Australian Boomers? or US vs France’s Les Bleus? But of course the Argentinians will not just give it to Spain and Lithuania since Manu Ginobili, Luis Scola, Carlos Delfino, Andres Nocioni will not team up for the last time without their sights set on that glistening Gold finish. But dont count out the upset concious Croatian team who are on playing with consistencies both at the ends of the floor. One we are all sure of, it will be one of the greatest basketball finals game of the 2016 Rio Olympic games.

There is no such thing as unbeatable but you have to disintegrate the solid fortress that has been there covered by talent and patriotism as those who plays with glittering game will take home the trickle of Gold. -Paquito

The Unforgettable  FIBAOQT Manila Experience

We were part of the historic basketball Olympic Qualifying Tournament and witnessed the A1+ game of TP09 in booking the last tix to Rio Olympics.

The recently concluded FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament held at the fabled Mall of Asia Arena has brought a lot of questions than answers for our own team Gilas Pilipinas. It was the largest by far as for basketball event ever held in the Philippine soil which were attended by current NBA superstars with Tristan Thompson , Tony Parker , Hamadi Ndiaye , Joel Anthony , Cory Joseph , Boris Diaw , Omer Asik and Euroleague MVP Nando De Colo who was also named the tournament MVP. The short but very important competition have the best ingredients for success our fellow countrymen are looking for in a prestigious basketball game where it is treated like religion in terms of popularity of the sports.

Though our bet Gilas Pilipinas were unable to notch a decent win, all loses ended in a single digit deficit against World power France and New Zealand who’ve played better team plays in both ends of the court. The thrill of getting into lead for a certain quarter somehow gave us the notion of getting to almost at their level of competitiveness. Andray Blatche played his best but come up short for a victory as his team mates were overpowered either by height and heft that will make our bunch of coaches to ponder the idea of getting taller and more agile players in the future.

Once more the tourney results and competitive level showed us the virtue of teamwork, the importance of cohesiveness, the beauty of familiarization of each member of a team that makes the execution of every play to run with a gentle and suave approach even in times of great pressures. The speed versus height and the outside shooting against clogged inside lanes balances the competition.

With my twin-brother Nando and youngest brother Chris who once played for FEU Basketball Team B. Both are still active competitively and bowed to extend their playing years after getting inspired by cat-quick moves of TP09

The strict adherence to games schedule made me consider to improve my time management in whatever situation I will be which were boldly felt inside the venue. No fancy or elaboration in the timely chronicles of each nation team movement to and from the Soffitel Hotel to the playing venue MOA Arena with high regard to being on-time attitude. The evident display of seriousness to win the lone pass to the ultimate basketball tournament which is the Olympics are traceable to their faces and body language.  Pride, Respect and History are the invisible part of the price at stake making these famous players played their heart out.

We were able to witnessed the different style of ball rotations, mind boggling passes making one player get open shot at the basket in the full view of the spectators drawing awe and screams of surprised crowds of the six nation inside the arena. And we were treated to several razzle dazzle moves by Jason Castro William the Gilas Pilipinas point guard and once again proves to us why he was the Asia’s Best Point Guard speeding fast his defender play every play and provided the needed points in coming up short in both losses.

The FIBA Officials led by President Patrick Bauman expressed his honest opinion of contentment with the way it was handled by our countrymen spearheaded by SBP Manny V. Pangilinan and SM Hans Sy and the PBA Officials . It was indeed world class.

Seeing our Philippine Flag side by side with the worlds best makes me prouder than ever.

Even after bowing out in two games of the Gilas Pilipinas, Filipino hoop fans with the mix of the visiting teams nationalities the arena were filled to rafters as the tickets sold on line was gone in a couple of hours after it was offered. This only shows the spectrum of basketball polarity with the US and Europe basketball remarkable following. The games popularity were felt by the visiting players as Tony Parker of French Basketball team said in an interview “we were like rockstar” indulging to selfies with his fans before boarding the teams designated bus going back to hotel.

Games souvenir from every sponsors were on display for sale ranging from one of the most expensive timepiece Tissot watch and TP09 official sponsor PEAK rubber shoes. Petron Tri Activ booth offers great prices if you can make 5 free throws in 30 seconds bringing you the pressure of making free throws within the time limit makes you experience how it is with FIBA in the international arena.

Chris Santiago of ANZ Bank calmly sank 5 consecutive freebthrows to win a Petron item shown here with Petron Tri Active ambassador.
FIBA OQT 2016 Manila leg sponsors

We are all witness to the level of game the tournament made of and it is with a positive thought that we must embrace to make it in the Olympic Games the basic and proven approach to the game that no team can win a game without playing solid defense, orchestrated offense and fluidity in motion in running our plays from both ends of the hardcourt within the whole 40 minutes duration. This experience have taught us the virtue of dedication to practice, the commando attitude we need to firmly stay focus throughout the tournament and ultra ordinary experience for the team, the players and the coaching staffs including the media and the die hard fans who will always believe in the talent of our countrymen who’ve made sacrifices to their respective family’s and love ones in serving our flag.

This is just a beginning of the next big thing in the history of the Philippine basketball, a teaser for the 2019 World Cup and eventually by Gods grace and players infinite admiration to serve and share their talent once more to elevate our level in the halls of basketball greatness if not supremacy in the heart of Asia.

#LabanPilipinas will always be our word of motivation and earn the respect of the basketball word .

Thank you for all the sponsors for treating us to an unforgettable experience we have never imagine could happen in our life, thank you for bringing the best of the basketball world. Smart , Meralco , PLDT , Petron Tri Activ , TPB Philippines , Tissot , Peak , Molten , Japan Airline , ChampionWanda Group and Nanjing Beer.

Thank you FIBA for reading my blog. Paquito