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gameface_one
06-23-2006, 07:26 AM
National team lineup for Jones Cup bared
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 06/23/2006

National coach Chot Reyes has named 11 players who will don the national colors in the coming Jones Cup in Chinese Taipei — most of them culled from among five teams which took an early exit in the ongoing Gran Matador Brandy PBA Philippine Cup.

Jones Cup veterans Asi Taulava, Rafi Reavis, Renren Ritualo, Jimmy Alapag and Denok Miranda head the crack roster that also includes brothers Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo, Niño Canaleta, Billy Mamaril and incoming PBA rookies LA Tenorio and Arwind Santos.

Reyes reserved one slot for a player coming from any of the two losing teams in the Philippine Cup Final Four.

Reyes had thought of bringing in Mark Caguioa and Fil-Am PBA players Joe Devance and Rob Reyes. Caguioa begged off to heal an injury while Devance flew back to the United States.

The Nationals, who have been continuously training with the hopes of making the grade for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, leave July 7 for the annual Taipei joust slated July 8-16.

The RP team has a busy schedule during the PBA break, notwithstanding the country’s suspension by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA).

"This indicates recognition by other countries of the talents that we have, and this should serve as a statement to the FIBA," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"We are being recognized as a force to reckon with in Asia. There are many teams who want to play us. So why suspend us?" Eala also said. "This is a good message for FIBA to reconsider its suspension of the Philippines."

Before leaving for Taipei, the Nationals will play the visiting Athletes in Action in an exhibition game here on July 3. The guest squad is composed of NCAA Division I players.

The RP squad is also set to play Lebanon and Chinese Taipei in other tune-up matches here before the end of July. Then the Nationals go to Qatar to compete in a four-nation tourney with Qatar, Lithuania and possibly Korea from Aug. 1-6.

PBA ballclubs will also have their own international campaigns with Talk n Text to compete in the Global Hoops Challenge in Las Vegas, Nevada, Sta. Lucia in the Sultan Cup in Brunei, San Miguel in a pro club championship in Taiwan and Air21 in a Hong Kong Invitational tilt.

"That is really the design of the reformatted PBA calendar, to allow the PBA to play abroad during its break," said Eala.

gameface_one
06-23-2006, 07:27 AM
RP team in Jones Cup
mb.com.ph


By TITO TALAO

ANTICIPATING A change of heart by the Basketball International Federation (FIBA), an RP-PBA team under national coach Chot Reyes is leaving next month for Taipei to compete in the William Jones Cup.


Eleven players from among five ball clubs that took an early leave from the PBA Philippine Cup, and a 12th player from a losing team in the ongoing Final Four playoffs, depart on July 7 for the yearly competition set July 8-16 .

On board will be Jones Cup veterans Asi Taulava, Rafi Reavis, Renren Ritualo, Jimmy Alapag and Denok Miranda. Joining them are brothers Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo, Niño Canaleta, Billy Mamaril and incoming PBA rookies LA Tenorio and Arwind Santos.

Slots had earlier been reserved for Mark Caguioa and Fil-Am amateurs Joe Devance and Rob Reyes, but all three begged off.

The RP team has a busy schedule during the PBA break, notwithstanding the country’s suspension by FIBA.

"This indicates recognition by other countries of the talents that we have, and this should serve as a statement to the FIBA," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"We are being recognized as a force to reckon with in Asia. There are many teams who want to play us. So why suspend us?" Eala also said.

Before leaving for Taipei, the Nationals are playing the visiting Athletes in Action in an exhibition here on July 3. The guest squad is composed of NCAA Division I players.

The RP squad is also set to play Lebanon and Chinese Taipei in other tune-up matches before the end of July. The Nationals then go to Qatar to compete in a four-nation tourney with Qatar, Lithuania and possibly Korea from Aug. 1-6.

PBA ball clubs will also have their own international campaigns with Talk 'N Text competing in the Global Hoops Challenge in Las Vegas, Nevada, Sta. Lucia Realty in the Sultan Cup in Brunei, San Miguel Beer in a pro club championship in Taiwan, and Air21 in a Hong Kong Invitational tilt.

"That’s really the design of the reformatted PBA calendar, to allow the PBA to play abroad during its break," said Eala, who will join the Nationals in Taipei.

gameface_one
06-23-2006, 07:33 AM
PBA prospects listed on RP 5 to Jones Cup (from ABS-CBN online)

By JOEL ORELLANA, The Manila Times Reporter

Despite the country’s suspension by the world governing body for basketball, the Philippine team under coach Chot Reyes braces for a number of Asian club tournaments that will prime them up for a possible stint in the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar, this year.

Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner Noli Eala disclosed this Thursday together with the lineup of the RP 5 that will represent the country in various international tournaments.

First in hand in is the annual William R. Jones Cup on July 8 to 16 in Taiwan, where the national dribblers hope to duplicate or surpass their third-place finish last year.

Debuting for Reyes in that tournament are PBA draft prospects LA Tenorio, Arwind Santos and Air21’s Ranidel de Ocampo, and two-time slam-dunk champion Nino Canaleta.

They will join RP Team regulars Jimmy Alapag, Dennis Miranda, Renren Ritualo, Yancy de Ocampo, Asi Taulava, Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril. The 12th spot for the Taiwan trip is being reserved for either James Yap or Willie Miller.

Prior to that, the Nationals face an American team called Athletes in Action, which is made up of seasoned US NCAA and NBA free agents on July 3 here.

The Philippine team also scheduled a friendly match against Chinese Taipei, tentatively scheduled at the end of July, before the much-awaited meeting with the Lebanese national team on August 11.

Qatar also sent an invitation to the national team to be part of a four-nation tournament that will include the hosts, Lithuania and Korea.

The RP 5 then defends its crown in the Sultan’s Cup in Brunei on August 19 to 27. Santa Lucia Realty is also entered in that tournament.

full battle gear
06-24-2006, 01:54 PM
Devance did not snub RP team, says Toyota Otis
by Jasmine Payo

Last updated 02:28am (Mla time) 06/24/2006

Published on page A24 of the June 24, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer


FIL-AM Joe Devance wasn’t remiss about his national team duties.

Toyota Otis team owner Gil Angeles clarified yesterday that Devance intended to suit up for the RP team, but had to fly back to the United States to attend to his ailing mother.

“He had to go home as soon as possible because his mother will be undergoing open heart surgery,” said Angeles. He left on June 20.

Coach Chot Reyes invited Devance, the Philippine Basketball League’s MVP, to be part of the national pool that will compete in the Jones Cup on July 8-16 in Taiwan.

But early reports claimed Devance left for Texas after Toyota Otis lost to Harbour Centre in the PBL title series.

gameface_one
06-26-2006, 08:51 AM
Asi, RenRen, Alapag can’t go to Jones Cup


By Beth Celis
Last updated 02:29am (Mla time) 06/24/2006

Published on page A24 of the June 24, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

IT’S BEEN a busy, most interesting week for me. I had the opportunity to meet and have a long chat with sports-showbiz couple James Yap and Kris Aquino who, I discovered, are both very easy to like; I got the chance to sit down with Welcoat owners Terry Que and Raymond Yu to discuss their “wish list”; I got to interview Ateneo head coach Norman Black and team manager Paolo Trillo regarding the Ateneo Blue Eagles’ preparations for the 2006 UAAP season; I got to attend Harbour Centre’s extended victory celebration twice; and I had a long talk with PBA vice chair Ricky Vargas on his team’s rehab plans for the 2006-07 PBA season.

Gosh, I almost forgot. I also had the chance to revisit Eugene Tejada at the Makati Medical Center (he said he was still feeling “the same” )and say “ciao” to his agent Bobby Rius, who was returning to San Francisco that day. Plus, I had a short interview with Purefoods cager and MVP aspirant Kerby Raymundo about his team’s chances of making the finals despite trailing Alaska, 0-2, in the ongoing PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven semifinal series.

* * *

Like teammate James Yap, Kerby is confident that the Giants would get back on track in Game 3 (yesterday).

“We just have to make minor adjustments. We studied the videotapes of Games One and Two and have realized that our mistakes are basic, madaling maitama,” Kerby said.

Both he and James agree that the long layoff may have also contributed to the Giants’ lethargy.

“Nagka-inertia. But after two games, tanggal na ang kalawang,” James said.

James and Kerby are No. 1 and No. 3, respectively, in the MVP statistical race after the quarterfinals. Red Bull’s Enrico Villanueva is in second place, Ginebra’s Mark Caguioa No. 4 and Lordy Tugade No. 5.

* * *

Because of his team’s dismal performance this conference, TNT’s Ricky Vargas and the coaching staff have drafted an intensive training program for the Phone Pals during the off-season.

On July 12, the team will fly to Los Angeles to compete in a summer league which will include a strong squad from China. From there, the team will undergo special training under American experts.

The Phone Pals will be out of the country from July 12 up to the first week of August. The conflict in schedule will not allow the three national cagers—Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and RenRen Ritualo—to join the RP team in the Jones Cup and the Sultan’s Cup in Brunei, which means coach Chot Reyes will have to make some adjustments.

“Our schedules have been firmed up way before we were informed about these overseas tournaments. We’ve booked for air travel, lodgings and have paid the fees,” explained Ricky.

* * *

Welcoat’s Terry Que made a rare appearance with partner Raymond Yu and Harbour Centre’s Mikee Romero at the PSA Forum last Tuesday, and to everyone’s delight, the mike-shy team owner even spoke a few words to the audience who wanted to know if Welcoat was ready for the PBA.

“Handang-handa na!” Terry uttered. Behind the microphone, he was stingy with words.

Later over lunch, Terry said that minus the mike, he was not that shy.

“The truth is, we are not really that ready yet, if we’re talking about the lineup. We’re still wracking our brains on how we can form a respectable team,” Terry said.

He and Raymond’s greatest fear is that the Paintmasters might get clobbered every game. Welcoat was allowed to elevate three players from their amateur team. The teams are protecting 10 players to give way to the expansion draft.

If they had a choice, Terry and Raymond would like to form their PBA squad around the Welcoat cagers who are now in the PBA. These are: James Yap, Rommel Adducul, Yancy de Ocampo, Don Allado, RenRen Ritualo, Marc Pingris, Celino Cruz, Earvin Soto, Willie Wilson, Nelbert Omolon and Ronald Tubid.

“That’s our wish list,” chorused Raymond and Terry.

Joescoundrel
06-27-2006, 09:36 PM
I wonder what Chot Reyes has in mind with that lineup...?

gameface_one
07-07-2006, 11:32 AM
‘Aspirants’ face tough odds in Jones Cup
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/07/2006

National basketball coach Chot Reyes said yesterday the "aspirants pool" will represent the country in the souped-up, nine-day Jones Cup where the competition is expected to be a killer.

Reyes, assistant coaches Binky Favis and Aboy Castro and the nucleus of the team leave this afternoon for Taipei where the annual tournament starts tomorrow with the Philippines playing Qatar in the stellar attraction of the opening program.

Reyes said organizers advanced the staging of the Jones Cup from late to early this month and the conflict with the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) playoff schedule limited the choice of players for the squad.

But Reyes said it’s a timely opportunity to test the mettle of the aspirants against tough opposition.

"They’re bringing back the prestige of the Jones Cup by inviting top-quality teams," said Reyes. "We’re caught in a situation where we’re not able to send our best players but playing in the tournament is an investment for the future. We’re playing the hand that’s been dealt to us and we’re out to play our best despite the odds."

Reyes said the Jones Cup cast is made up of a US collegiate selection, a Japan Basketball League All-Star squad with imports, the Australian club Perth Wildcats, the Philippines and national teams from Qatar, Chinese-Taipei, Kazakhstan and Korea.

Reyes is taking 15 players to Taipei. Tournament rules allow each team to choose 12 players from a 15-man lineup 30 minutes before a game.

Four amateurs–L. A. Tenorio, Arwind Santos, Joseph Yeo and Abby Santos–were recruited as aspirants to gain experience as national cagers. The pros in the mix are Ali Peek, John Arigo and Denok Miranda of Coca-Cola, Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo, Nino Canaleta and Ronald Tubid of Air21, Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer and Sonny Thoss and Mike Cortez of Alaska. A slot was being reserved for either Alaska’s Nic Belasco or San Miguel Beer’s Dorian Peña at presstime.

Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and RenRen Ritualo begged off from the trip because they’re playing for Talk ‘N’ Text at the Global Hoops Summit in Las Vegas on July 16-22. Willie Miller, Tony de la Cruz, Mark Caguioa and Eric Menk also declined invitations. Danny Seigle and Jay-Jay Helterbrand are nursing injuries. Players from Purefoods and Red Bull could not be tapped because of the ongoing PBA Finals.

Fil-Am amateur stars Joe Devance, Kelly Williams and Robbi Reyes are in the US visiting families after playing in the Philippine Basketball League and asked to be excused from the Taipei trip.

Reyes said the team practiced three days last week and every day starting this week. Last Monday, the "aspirants" lost a 73-68 decision to a visiting Athletes-In-Action squad from the US in a friendly at the Ynares Center. Ranidel de Ocampo scored 15 points and Canaleta chipped in 12 for the locals.

"We’ve got an exciting, young team," said Reyes. "We haven’t had enough time to play together but we’re getting there. Our national program is built on three levels — juniors, aspirants and seniors. Playing the aspirants in the Jones Cup is part of our preparation for the future. This is value for the future in case we’re allowed to play in the Asian Games this year. And since Kazakhstan, Chinese-Taipei, Korea and Qatar are playing in the Jones Cup, it’s also a scouting mission for us."

Favis said because of offseason commitments, it’s been a guessing game as to which players will show up for practice.

"We’ve had to teach the young guys our system so it’s like starting from the top," he said. "Without someone like Miller, we don’t have too many players who can break down the defense. We lack balance because we’re not deep in some positions. But it’s a challenge we don’t mind taking because this is for the future."

Hontiveros, Cortez and Thoss are arriving in Taipei on their own because of previous commitments in Manila. Hontiveros is flying in Sunday while Cortez and Thoss are leaving Monday. They will miss the Philippines’ games against Qatar tomorrow and Chinese-Taipei on Sunday.

PBA commissioner Noli Eala said the team’s recent game against Athletes-In-Action was an eye-opener.

"Ranidel was a revelation, playing like a superstar," said Eala. "L. A. held his own against bigger guards. The team lacked time to jell and because the players just started training, they lost steam at the end of every quarter. But it was a good effort and the team showed a lot of promise."

Eala said Athletes-In-Action’s 6-5 guard Gabe Norwood of George Mason University has Filipino roots and would be a valuable addition to the national team in the future. Reyes said Norwood’s grandmother is from Pangasinan.

gameface_one
07-08-2006, 10:46 AM
Young RP 5 in Jones Cup
abs-cbnnews.com


The absence of three key players will force the Philippine team to keep its expectations to a minimum when it competes in the annual William Jones Cup starting Saturday up to July 16 in Taiwan.

Before leaving for the Chinese Taipei capital on Friday, national coach Chot Reyes announced that team regulars Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and Renren Ritualo of the Talk ’N Text squad will not be available.

The three along with the other Phone Pals will leave on Tuesday to compete in the Los Angeles Summer Pro League from July 8 to 19 in Long Beach, California.

In their place, Reyes plucked Ali Peek and John Arigo from Coca-Cola plus Ronald Tubid from Air21, as the Philippines takes on Qatar Saturday at 3 p.m. in its bid to better its third-place finish in last year’s edition.

"While we’ll do our best to win it all, the reality is that with the ongoing finals and the TNT pullout, we are essentially bringing the aspirants team of 25-year-olds and below [except for Arigo, Peek and Dondon Hontiveros]," said Reyes.

"Thus, our main objective is really to train future national players and scout other Asian teams," said Reyes on the eight-team field that includes Asian heavyweights Korea, Japan and Kazakhstan.

The three countries, which along with Qatar will be fielding teams in the coming Asian Games, are sending their national teams to the event to be held at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium.

The three newcomers join leading Philippine Basketball Association draft prospect Lewis Alfred Tenorio and University Athletic Association of the Philippines Most Valuable Player Arwind Santos along with Air21 stars Ranidel de Ocampo, slamdunk champion Niño Canaleta, Denok Miranda, Yancy de Ocampo, Mike Cortez and Sonny Thoss.

Eight teams will play in a single round robin in the preliminary round.

The Philippines takes on Taiwan on July 9 (7 p.m.), Korea on July 10 (5 p.m.), Australia on July 11 (3 p.m.), Kazakhstan on July 12 (3 p.m.), USA on July 13 (5 p.m.) and Japan on July 14 (5 p.m.) in the prelims.

The Nationals also scheduled a friendly with Chinese Taipei, tentatively scheduled at the end of July, and a match with the Lebanon national team on August 11.

The Lebanese meet the Nationals before they fly to Saitama, Japan, to campaign in the World Basketball Championships on August 19 to September 3.

Qatar also invited the Philippines to play in a four-nation tournament that includes the hosts and Lithuania on August 1 to 6.

Reyes’ team will be in Brunei along with Santa Lucia Realty on August 19 to 27 to defend its title in the Sultan’s Cup.

gameface_one
07-08-2006, 10:52 AM
RP vs Qatar cagers today in Jones Cup
mb.com.ph


By NOLI CRUZ

THE ABSENCE of three key players will keep the expectations to a minimum for Team Philippines when it competes in the William Jones Cup starting today up to July 16 in Taipei.


Team regulars Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and Renren Ritualo of Talk ‘N Text will miss the tournament since they will be joining the Phone Pals in the Los Angeles Summer Pro League from July 8 to 19 in Long Beach, California.

Coach Chot Reyes has tapped Ali Peek and John Arigo from Coca-Cola and Ronald Tubid from Air21 to take their places.

The Philippines, bidding to improve its third-place finish last year, faces Qatar at 3 p.m. today at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium.

"While we’ll do our best to win it all, the reality is that with the ongoing finals and the TNT pullout, we are essentially bringing the aspirants team of 25 year olds and below (except for Arigo, Peek and San Miguel’s Dondon Hontiveros)," said Reyes in a text message.

Two of the young stars joining the trip are Alaska’s Sonny Thoss and Mike Cortez.

"Our main objective is really to train future national players and scout other Asian teams," said Reyes.

The eight-team field includes Asian heavyweights Korea, Japan and Kazakhstan. The three are sending their national teams in the competition.

gameface_one
07-09-2006, 07:08 AM
Aspirants bow to Qatar in Jones Cup
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/09/2006

The country’s "aspirants" pool battled back from 16 points down in the third quarter and trailed by only three with a minute left but Joseph Yeo missed a triple as Qatar eked out a 68-63 decision in the eight-team Jones Cup basketball tournament at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Taiwan yesterday.

National coach Chot Reyes said he couldn’t ask anything more from his undermanned squad that was formed barely two weeks before leaving for Taipei last Friday.

"If there’s such a thing as a good loss, this was it," said Reyes. "Joseph and Denok (Miranda) got us back in the game. We were down by three and ran a play with less than a minute to go but just couldn’t convert. We stole the ball back but again, couldn’t score. We extended perhaps the tournament’s second best team to the limit. Our press was almost perfect. Ranidel (de Ocampo) and KG (Canaleta) did a good job in our press because they’re both long, pesky and quick."

Qatar coach Joseph Steibing said, ’the Philippines never gave up " they played us hard and tough and probably deserved to win the game more than us."

L. A. Tenorio got the team off to a flying start with a daredevil drive and a triple. Qatar was up by two, 20-18, at the end of the first period but slowly pulled away behind its deep bench.

"Constantly scratching and clawing, compensating for our poor perimeter shooting with some great defense, we still trailed by 12 with six minutes left then KG and Joseph hit back-to-back triples to get us to within six," related Reyes. "It was nip and tuck from there until the end."

Reyes said he approached the game with the idea of playing hard but not showing all his cards because "our feeling is, if we get lucky to make it to the Final Four, we’ll play Qatar again."

Reyes brought a team of 11 players, including amateur stars Yeo, Abby Santos, Arwind Santos and Tenorio, to Taipei and called the mission "an investment for the future." Mike Cortez, Sonny Thoss and Dondon Hontiveros, who couldn’t leave last Friday because of previous commitments, are flying in tomorrow to reinforce the aspirants.

Qatar finished third in the last FIBA (Federation de Basketball Internationale)-Asia qualifiers and will represent the region with China and Lebanon in the World Championships in Japan on Aug. 19-Sept. 3. Qatar will host the Asian Games late this year.Reyes described Qatar as a legitimate title contender in the tournament.

’They’ve matured," he said. ’They’re really a team now. They’re tall, big, athletic and quick and they’ve got good shooters. Their average height is 6-5."

Qatar’s star player Yaseem Ismail was suited up but didn’t play. Canadian transplant Ali Saad Abdulrahman, a 6-2 point guard, scored 18 points and 6-6 forward Erfan Ali Saeed chipped in 13 for Qatar.

Reyes said the aspirants whittled down the deficit behind a stifling press and triples from Yeo and Canaleta. What doused the aspirants? chances to overhaul Qatar’s lead was poor shooting. The national team hit only 8-of-16 from the line and shot 38 percent from the floor, compared to Qatar’s 47 percent. Qatar also outrebounded the aspirants, 49-29.

Eight men’s teams are playing in a single-round robin preliminary phase. The top four placers then face off in the semifinals with No. 1 against No. 4 and No. 2 against No. 3. The winners then dispute the championship in the finals on July 16.

The teams playing in the Jones Cup are the Philippines, Qatar, US, Japan, Korea, Chinese-Taipei, Kazakhstan and Australia.

Sam Miguel
07-10-2006, 02:48 PM
An "aspirants team", good grief...

AnthonyServinio
07-11-2006, 02:02 AM
An "aspirants team", good grief...
Before anyone reacts any further, the aspirants have now lost three games in a row.

They lost to . . .

Qatar NT 63-68
Chinese-Taipei NT 72-77
South Korea University All-Stars 88-96

That should more or less dash any hopes of this team taking home the 2006 Jones Cup! >:(

gameface_one
07-11-2006, 07:58 AM
Hosts pin 2nd loss on RP team aspirants
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/11/2006

The hard-luck Philippine aspirants basketball team suffered a second heartbreaking loss in a row as host Chinese-Taipei held on to a 77-72 win after squandering a 14-point lead in the eight-nation Jones Cup at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Taiwan last Sunday night.

National coach Chot Reyes blamed himself for failing to map out a precise play on the final possession and said the players had nothing to be ashamed of with their performance.

Reyes called his last timeout with the hosts ahead, 75-72, time down to 11 seconds. He sent in five three-point shooters—John Arigo, Joseph Yeo, Ronald Tubid, Nino Canaleta and Ranidel de Ocampo—with the intention of sending the game into overtime. But as Yeo started his drive to hand off to Canaleta, the ball went loose and Chinese-Taipei recovered to score a layup at the buzzer.

"I told the players after the game I should have come up with a better final possession play," said Reyes. "Once more, our players refused to quit, putting up a gallant effort. Every time Chinese-Taipei threatened to pull away, we came back. We went into a very difficult situation and almost pulled off a victory, had a few calls gone our way in the end."

Reyes said while it’s not his habit to blame officiating for a loss, he pointed out the discrepancies in free throws and fouls.

Chinese-Taipei shot 17-of-22 from the line and had 11 fouls, compared to the Philippines’ 5-of-5 charities and 21 fouls.

US coach Mike Jarvis, known for his stint at St. John’s University in the NCAA Division I, congratulated the Filipino squad when the game ended.

"Mike went down on his knees in front of me, marveling at how I was able to keep my cool and not get called for a technical foul in the face of that kind of officiating," said Reyes. "I told him we expected it but it still didn’t make it any easier to take."

The aspirants raced to a 22-17 lead in the first quarter as 6-10 center Tseng Wen Ting picked up two early fouls and was benched most of the way. Yeo and Tubid conspired to build the margin to eight before Chinese-Taipei caught up with free throws to take the half, 40-35.

Chinese-Taipei led, 66-52, with seven minutes left when the Philippines unloaded a 10-0 bomb with Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo, Ali Peek, Arigo and L. A. Tenorio, celebrating his birthday, on the floor.

Denok Miranda and Tubid checked in to cut the deficit to two, 68-66, with 2:50 left. Tseng then converted a three-point play but Ranidel de Ocampo countered with a triple. Chinese-Taipei came back with two free throws, 73-69, with 57 ticks to go. De Ocampo knocked down another trey to trim the gap to a point, 73-72, with 32 seconds remaining. Tien Lei scored on a difficult drive to push Chinese-Taipei on top, 75-72, and the Philippines went blank for good.

Reyes said despite the loss, the aspirants achieved several goals, including holding star scorer Chen Hsin An to six points, winning the battle of the boards, 40-30, and shooting close to 50 percent. Chen has played the last two years in the American Basketball Association and once attended the Sacramento Kings training camp.

"Our approach to the game was control," said Reyes. "We didn’t want to engage Chinese-Taipei in an all-out running game, opting instead to run selectively, but with greater emphasis on good shot selection. We knew we had to shoot better than the 37 percent we shot against Qatar if we were to have a chance. We understand we were in for a difficult game versus the home team but instead of dreading it, we talked about relishing the situation and actually growing and becoming better players regardless of the result."

The Philippines" next contest is against Korea but Reyes said reinforcements Mike Cortez, Sonny Thoss and Dondon Hontiveros are doubtful for the game because they’ll arrive from Manila only two hours before the tip-off.

The US, Chinese-Taipei and Qatar are on top of the standings so far with 2-0 records. Australia and Korea are 1-1. Winless in two starts are Kazakhstan, Japan and the Philippines.

The US crushed Australia"s under-19 national team, 70-51, and the Korea University All-Stars, 93-89, to emerge the early favorite.

Chinese-Taipei opened its campaign with a resounding 113-70 romp over Japan’s under-24 national team.

gameface_one
07-12-2006, 08:38 AM
RP five tops Australia
mb.com.ph




SMC-PILIPINAS SURVIVED a harrowing fourth quarter breakdown to stun a young but tall Australian team, 76-67, yesterday and stay in contention for a Final 4 slot in the William Jones Cup tournament at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium.


The national team under coach Chot Reyes checked a three-game losing start, the latest against three-point deadly South Korea 96-88, and will next face Kazakhstan, needing to sweep its remaining three games to remain in the hunt.

After getting savaged by the officiating in dropping their second game, a 77-72 defeat to host Taiwan, the Nationals produced a worthy performance in the series against Australia’s 19-under team.

Yancy de Ocampo and Dondon Hontiveros combined for 13 points in the pivotal third quarter as SMC-Pilipinas opened a 15-point lead before settling for a 56-47 advantage, with John Arigo and top amateurs Arwind Santos and Joseph Yeo hitting 3-point baskets.

But the Australians, using their height advantage, began dominating the offensive board in the final quarter, securing second- and third-chance baskets in coming within three points in the last three minutes.

Ali Peek and Hontiveros, however, came to the rescue with seven points, including an all-important 3-pointer from Hontiveros, to stop the Australian’s rally.

Though error-filled, the Nationals opened a 32-27 lead early as Yeo scored 10 points, building up their confidence and momentum to cushion off the Aussies’ late charge.

"Ironically, we won playing our worst game thus far," said Reyes. "I had very little to do with this win as it was coaches Binky Favis and Aboy Castro who did most of the coaching because I lost my voice from cough and cold last night."

PBA commissioner Noli Eala was elated with the victory.

"The team is beginning to jell," he said. "The coaches did a good job shuffling players. This was a big win because it proved we can win even if we don’t reach our top form."

Yeo and Peek led SMCPilipinas with 14 points, De Ocampo had 12, Hontiveros 9, and Arigo 8 points.

gameface_one
07-12-2006, 08:40 AM
RP 5 finally nails win in Jones Cup
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/12/2006

After three heartbreaking losses, the Philippine aspirants national team broke out of its slump to beat the Australian under-19 squad, 76-67, in the Jones Cup at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Taiwan yesterday.

The Filipinos blew a 15-point advantage in the third period and led by only three with three minutes left before Ali Peek and Dondon Hontiveros sparked a late surge to ice it.

Coach Chot Reyes credited the win to assistants Binky Favis and Aboy Castro as he hardly spoke during the game because of a sore throat. He was literally speechless after the rousing win.

Reyes said it was ironic that the Philippines won despite playing its worst game so far in the eight-nation tournament. The aspirants were outrebounded by six, shot only 43 percent from the floor and committed 18 turnovers. But they played with the heart and character of a champion.

"It’s good our three reinforcements (Hontiveros, Mike Cortez and Sonny Thoss) arrived (last Monday) because this was the same juncture we struggled in last year when fatigue and the unfamiliarity of playing everyday start taking a heavy toll," said Reyes.

Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) commissioner Noli Eala, watching at courtside, said the team showed a lot of character in repulsing the taller and younger Australians.

"We started slow, showing signs of fatigue from playing their fourth straight game," said Eala. "One thing noticeable is that the pros are starting to adjust to international rules and style of play. Ali Peek was a revelation. He played against 6-9 guys but was dominating. Cortez controlled tempo and Yancy (de Ocampo) showed toughness and versatility."

Eala singled out amateur star Joseph Yeo of Harbour Centre as the Team’s surprise package. "Yeo hit big threes and showed a lot of maturity," said Eala. "Dondon also broke out. Overall, the team showed character."

Yeo led the aspirants with 15 points in 18 minutes.

"I was disappointed with the fact that despite being the younger team, the Philippines was consistently first on the ground," said Australian coach Marty Clarke. "They kept beating us to the loose balls."

The Philippines raced to a 32-27 lead with Yeo firing 10 points. Then, Yancy de Ocampo and Hontiveros combined for 13 points with Yeo, John Arigo and Arwind Santos knocking down triples in an explosive third period. Australia came back from 15 points down to trim the gap to nine, 56-47.

"I had very little to do with this win as it was coaches Binky and Aboy who did most of the coaching as I lost my voice since the night before," said Reyes.

Eala said the team is beginning to jell. "Coach Chot did a good job of shuffling his players," he added. "This was a big win because it proved we can win even if we haven’t reached our top form."

With the win, the Philippines survived its first do-or-die test. To qualify for the Final Four, the Philippines must win the rest of its games. The Philippines’ campaign in the Jones Cup is supported by the PBA Board and San Miguel Corp.

gameface_one
07-13-2006, 08:48 AM
All about showing up
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 07/13/2006

National coach Chot Reyes waxed philosophical when he explained why it was important for the Philippines to be represented in the eight-team Jones Cup in Taipei despite assembling a raw team with four amateur cagers.

"I believe that 50 percent of success in life lies in showing up," he said. "Showing up does not automatically guarantee success but the reverse is always true — that is, if you don’t show up, you have no chance. It is with this mindset that we decided to push through with our Jones Cup participation."

Reyes realized the country’s top players wouldn’t be available because of conflicts in schedule. Stars from Purefoods and Red Bull were locked in bitter battle in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Finals, knocking out the likes of James Yap, Enrico Villanueva, Kerby Raymundo, Lordy Tugade and Mick Pennisi. And Talk ‘N’ Text was committed to play in the Southern California Summer Pro League in Long Beach, meaning Asi Taulava, RenRen Ritualo, Jimmy Alapag, Jay Washington, Mac-Mac Cardona and Don Allado couldn’t be tapped for the Jones Cup.

Turning a negative into a positive, Reyes said the decision was made by the PBA Board and chief sponsor San Miguel Corp. to concentrate on the future instead.

"We assembled what we call our aspirants pool, a group of mostly 25-and-under players with the exception of Ali Peek, John Arigo and Dondon Hontiveros, to go on what is essentially a training and scouting mission," continued Reyes.

"We knew we ran the risk of not doing well at all, thus opening ourselves up to criticism and negative publicity. But in the end, we decided that the Jones Cup was too prestigious a tournament to pass up and that there were too many positives in terms of player development and competing with other Asian teams like Qatar, Chinese-Taipei, Japan and Kazakhstan."

Last Friday, Reyes and assistants Binky Favis, Aboy Castro, Djalma Arnedo and Dennis Aenlle left Manila for Taipei with players L. A. Tenorio, Arwind Santos, Abby Santos, Joseph Yeo, Arigo, Peek, Denok Miranda, Nino Canaleta, Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo and Ronald Tubid.

Mike Cortez, Sonny Thoss and Hontiveros flew out last Monday in time for the Philippines’ third game against the Korea University All-Stars.

The aspirants’ first game was a nail-biter last Saturday. Qatar beat the Philippines, 68-63, after erecting a 42-28 halftime cushion. The next day, it was Chinese-Taipei’s turn to frustrate the Filipinos, 77-72.

Playing against the host team, the aspirants stormed back from a 14-point deficit with seven minutes left to cut the gap to one, 73-72, time down to 32 seconds. Then, Chinese-Taipei’s 6-9 MVP Tien (Garrett) Lei scored on a difficult drive to make it 75-72 with 11 ticks to go.

Reyes called a timeout and sent in five three-point shooters for the equalizer. But before the aspirants could set up the last play, the ball went loose and Chen Chih-chun got possession for a layup as time expired. Tien wound up with 19 points and 6-10 center Tsun Wen Din collected 17 points, eight rebounds and seven blocked shots.

Cortez, Thoss and Hontiveros arrived in Taipei with PBA commissioner Noli Eala last Monday. Somehow, they managed to make it to the Physical Education College Gymnasium in time for the Philippines’ third game against Korea.

The Philippines got off to a hot 7-0 start and the score was tied, 23-all, at the end of the first period. Then the Koreans found their range from the outside and used a blistering fastbreak attack to lead, 53-42, at the half.

Eala said he was impressed by Korea’s Sang Oh Park who shot a team-high 27 points. He mentioned spectators missed Asi Taulava and Romel Adducul, fan favorites in last year’s Jones Cup, and wondered where they were. Eala returned to Manila yesterday.

"After watching the US beat Korea by only four the night before, we knew we were in for a tough battle," said Reyes. "Our concentration was to improve on our previous performance while staying in front of our man and extending out on the perimeter as Korea could field five three-point shooters at a time."

In the third period, the Philippines reduced the margin to four as Peek and Ranidel de Ocampo hit their stride inside the lane. But Korea continued to sizzle from the outside and sat on a seven-point cushion starting the fourth quarter.

"We were poised to make another run but had to rest Mike and Dondon while Denok (Miranda) and Ranidel ran into foul trouble," continued Reyes. "Our bench could not maintain the pressure and a couple of shot-clock beating, hand-in-your-face, falling to the floor triples by the Koreans sealed the victory."

Reyes said Korea’s outside shooting spelled the difference in the 96-88 decision.

"We didn’t play poorly," he said. "But they just wouldn’t miss. We shot 63 percent from the field, had more rebounds, 34-31 and hit 11-of-12 free throws yet we still lost. Korea shot only 48 percent from the field and 71 percent from the line but made 18-of-43 triples. This was simply too much for us to overcome. If they made only 15 instead of 18 triples, we would’ve won the game. What made matters worse was I lost my voice due to a severe cough and cold, hampering my ability to coach. Now, our only hope for a Final 4 slot is to sweep our remaining games."

Aside from Park, Korea relied on Jae Young Cha and Byung Hyu Kang for clutch baskets.

gameface_one
07-15-2006, 10:23 AM
Hard-luck RP 5 to settle for crumbs
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/15/2006

Although out of title contention, the Philippine aspirants national basketball team is determined to end its disappointing Jones Cup campaign with a bang.

The Philippines will play three more games against Japan and two other teams in the classification round before winding up the tournament on Sunday.

A glimmer of hope emerged when after three straight losses, the Philippines beat the Australian under-19 squad, 76-67, at the Chinese-Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Taiwan last Tuesday.

But the Filipinos lost a 91-86 decision to Kazakhstan the next day to wipe out chances of advancing to the Final Four playoffs. And to make matters worse, the US crushed the Philippines, 91-68, the day after.

Last year, the Philippines finished third in the annual competition with a lineup consisting of Asi Taulava, Kerby Raymundo, Romel Adducul, Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Kelly Wiliams, Tony de la Cruz, Willie Miller, Brandon Cablay, Yancy de Ocampo, Dondon Hontiveros, Denok Miranda and Jondan Salvador.

This year, only Hontiveros and Miranda are back on the team that Reyes assembled with the future in mind. Reyes recruited players in the 25-and-under category to create an aspirants pool and beefed up the squad with veterans Ali Peek, John Arigo and Hontiveros. L. A. Tenorio, Arwind Santos, Joseph Yeo and Abby Santos were tapped from the amateur ranks to join the squad.

The win over Australia showcased Yeo as a blue-chip pro prospect. He was the last player off the bench and scored 15 points in 18 minutes. Yeo scattered 10 points in the last five minutes of the second period to push the Philippines on top, 32-27, at the half.

Australia trailed by nine at the start of the fourth quarter but trimmed the gap to two, 56-54, before Peek, Ranidel de Ocampo and Hontiveros with two triples conspired to ice the game. Other key contributors were Mike Cortez with five points and seven assists and Yancy de Ocampo who shot 10 points in 20 minutes.

Kevin Probert paced Australia with 13 points.

Losing to Kazakhstan was a bitter pill to swallow particularly as Australia had previously beaten the junior team, 87-84, and the Kazakhs were trounced by Korea in a 35-point blowout. Kazakhstan had also lost to Qatar by nine despite scoring 15 triples.

But Kazakhstan showed up with their heads high, coming from an 88-85 upset over host Chinese-Taipei.

The Philippines raced to an early 27-14 lead and stayed on top, 46-40, at the half. The Kazakhs came back with torrid outside shooting to seize the advantage, 68-65, to start the fourth period.

"It was evident that Kazakhstan gave us the same problems that Korea and Taipei did, how to stop a mobile three-point shooting big man," said Reyes. "If our big men like Ali, Yancy or Sonny (Thoss) got up on them, they would blow by on penetration. If we use a smaller lineup with KG (Canaleta) and Ranidel, we could not rebound. This was the value of Rafi Reavis, Kelly Williams, Nic Belasco and Kerby Raymundo of last year’s teams–mobile, rebounding utility men. To make matters worse, they had a 6-6 deadshot who just kept shooting over our wingmen’s heads."

The score was tied, 80-all, then Kazakhstan scored five straight points to make it 85-80, with 3:30 left. The Philippines came within a point but couldn’t regain the lead.

gameface_one
07-16-2006, 07:50 AM
RP 5 to salvage lost pride
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 07/16/2006

Despite failing to make it to the Final Four playoffs, the Philippine aspirants national basketball team can still gain some measure of respect if it beats Kazakhstan for fifth place on the final day of the Jones Cup tournament in Taipei this afternoon.

The Filipinos got off to a shaky 0-3 start in the annual eight-nation joust, losing heartbreakers to Qatar by five, Chinese-Taipei by five and the Korea University All-Stars by eight before trouncing the Australian under-19 squad, 76-67.

With a 1-3 record, the Philippines had to sweep its remaining games against Kazakhstan, the US and the Japanese under-24 national team to barge into the championship playoffs.

Kazakhstan crushed the Filipinos’ hopes of advancing by claiming a 91-86 decision. The Philippines will avenge the loss with a win over the Kazakhs today.

The roof caved in on the Philippines in a disastrous game against the US, represented by Athletes In Action (AIA).

Organized in 1966, Athletes In Action is the sports arm of the Campus Crusade for Christ ministry. It played as the US team at the World Championships in Manila in 1978 and finished fifth with a lineup that listed future pros Ralph Drollinger of UCLA and Irv Kiffin of Oklahoma Baptist. No pros were allowed to play in the World Championships at the time and when the US showed up with National Basketball Association veteran Larry Johnson of Kentucky, he was promptly disqualified and sent home. I exposed the anomaly in a front page story in the now defunct Daily Express newspaper.

In the Jones Cup, the US squad is coached by Mike Jarvis who called the shots at Boston University, St. John’s and George Washington in posting a 364-201 record in an 18-year NCAA Division I career. Jarvis piloted St. John’s to the Elite Eight in the NCAA Tournament in 1999 and coached the US under-22 squad in 1993.

Jarvis assembled a young AIA team of strictly collegiate players, including teens Daniel Faris of New Mexico and 6-11 Luke Zeller of Notre Dame who are both 19. To bring instant chemistry to the squad, Jarvis recruited three players from the New Mexico varsity–6-9 Faris, 6-4 Troy DeVries and 6-5 Tony Dandridge–and two from Texas A&M–6-4 Josh Carter and 6-3 Dominique Kirk.

The others in the US roster are 6-11 Justin (Boomer) Herndon of Belmont, 6-9 Christian Moody of Kansas, 6-2 JaRon Jefferson of Montana State, 6-3 Nick Grant of Drake and 6-3 Mark Schiavoni of the Citadel (Purefoods guard Noy Castillo’s alma mater).

The US’ only loss in the tournament was an 83-77 shocker to Qatar. It took care of Australia, 70-51, Korea, 93-89, Chinese-Taipei, 86-83, Japan, 108-81, Kazakhstan, 84-74 and the Philippines, 91-68.

National coach Chot Reyes said the 23-point loss to the US was not totally unexpected.

"Playing our sixth straight game, we couldn’t match the US’ size and speed in our worst game so far," he groaned. "I rested my key players to make sure we have something left against Japan."

Dondon Hontiveros was one of only two Filipinos to score in double figures with 11 points. The other was L. A. Tenorio with 10. The US knocked down 14 triples to the Philippines’ eight and won the battle of the boards by a mile, 49-29.

Reyes’ strategy of taking one step back for two steps forward paid off. In the Japan game, the Philippines was devastating.

Reyes rested Mike Cortez, Yancy de Ocampo and Sonny Thoss due to minor injuries and lost Niño Canaleta on an ejection in the first minute. Japan’s Akihito Inoue started the melee with an elbow on Canaleta’s right cheek as Yosuke Machida hit a triple to break the ice. Canaleta retaliated by rapping Inoue in the nape, causing his ejection.

To make matters worse, Ranidel de Ocampo picked up his second foul after only three minutes, crippling Reyes’ rotation even more.

But pro-bound Arwind Santos took up the cudgels for the Philippines as he dominated the boards and hit a pair of threes to lift the aspirants to a 53-43 halftime lead. The Japanese trimmed the gap to four but John Arigo and Ali Peek conspired to open a nine-point cushion, 75-66, to start the fourth period.

The Philippines ignited a 10-2 blast that ballooned the lead to 18, time down to five minutes, and breezed the rest of the way to a 112-86 win. Arwind Santos wound up with 22 points, Arigo 20, Peek 14, Denok Miranda 13, Tenorio 12, Abby Santos 9,Hontiveros 8, Joseph Yeo 7, Ronald Tubid 6 and Ranidel de Ocampo 1. Yusuke Okada led the winless Japanese with 23 points.

To arrange the showdown with Kazakhstan for fifth place, the Philippines subdued Australia, 69-67, in a rematch yesterday.

The repeat win over the Aussies wasn’t easy. The aspirants stormed back from an early 16-point deficit to eke out the decision behind Arigo’s 12 points and Arwind Santos’ 11. Canaleta sat out the contest. Organizers allowed the two-time Philippine Basketball Association slam dunk king to play despite the ejection in the Japan game but Reyes decided to bench him as an internal disciplinary action.

The worst the Philippines can finish is sixth and the best is fifth.

Last year, the Philippines, Qatar and Russia finished in a tie for third place with identical 6-3 records. Reyes also coached the national team that was led by Asi Taulava, Jay-Jay Helterbrand and Hontiveros.

The year before, the Basketball Association of the Philippines sent the Cebuana Lhuillier "national" team to the Jones Cup and the squad wound up eighth of nine entries, losing seven games by an embarrassing average of 21.4 points. The only Filipino victim was a clumsy youth selection from Germany.

gameface_one
07-18-2006, 08:00 AM
RP drops to sixth in Jones Cup
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 07/18/2006

The Philippine aspirants national basketball team finished sixth in the eight-team Jones Cup after losing a 98-86 decision to Kazakhstan in a consolation game at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Taiwan last Sunday.

A near free-for-all marred the contest with about five minutes left when Arwind Santos took an elbow in the face from 6-9 Isakov Yevgeniy as both players crashed to the floor in a rebounding battle.

The players on the bench rushed to Santos’ aid but were persuaded to back off by cooler heads. Both Santos and Yevgeniy were thrown out for roughhousing even as the referees called a held ball on the play.

"The players were just fed up getting banged around the whole tournament and couldn’t take the physical and officiating abuse any longer,’ said Reyes. "Losing Arwind was a big blow and we couldn’t come closer."

Neither team took control in the early going as Kazakhstan took a slim 41-37 lead at the half. The Kazakhs doubled Ali Peek at the post and shadowed Dondon Hontiveros and John Arigo in the perimeter while the aspirants contained top scorers Anton Ponomarev and Yevgeniy.

But Dmitry Klirnov erupted for 14 points as Kazakhstan broke away, 74-58, to open the fourth period. The aspirants trimmed the deficit to 10 but were stymied after entering into penalty situation with 6:30 to go and the Kazakhs still had no fouls.

Backup center Abby Santos, one of four amateur standouts in the squad, led the aspirants with 16 points and 10 rebounds in 20 minutes. Arwind Santos netted 13 points while Arigo and Peek hit 10 apiece.

Reyes, who arrived home with the team yesterday, said the aspirants have nothing to be ashamed of.

"They came to represent our country and they represented well, regardless of the result," he said. "For this alone, they should be commended as they could have taken a vacation or rested their injuries or just said no, as others did. These 14 men answered the call and showed up. As I told the players in our final meeting, I am very proud to have had the opportunity to work and go to battle with them."

Reyes said despite the team’s 3-6 overall record, he found it a worthwhile learning experience. He called it an investment for the future.

"We saw first-hand who among our group of players could or have the potential to play at this level," he said. "It allowed us to scout three very strong teams — Qatar, Chinese-Taipei and Kazakhstan — for either the Asian Games or FIBA-Asia 2007, if ever we get the chance to play. And more importantly, the experience allowed the players to get better as individual players and to grow as persons."

Reyes said the team is grateful to the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Board of Governors and chief sponsor San Miguel Corp. for making the trip possible.

The US team Athletes In Action beat Chinese-Taipei by 10 to capture the title. Qatar defeated Korea University All-Stars for third place.

Meanwhile, Talk ‘N’ Text scored a rousing 88-86 overtime win over the Hoopstars at the Southern California Pro Summer League in Long Beach, California, last Saturday.

Jimmy Alapag netted 20 points to pace the Phone Pals. Asi Taulava compiled 15 points and 10 rebounds. Harvey Carey contributed 13 points and nine rebounds while MacMac Cardona chipped in 12 points. Ren-Ren Ritualo and Jay Washington tallied eight each. Victor Pablo had five points, Don Allado four points and seven rebounds and Donbel Belano a triple.

It was a gritty showing by the visiting Filipinos, the only foreign entry in the tournament. The Phone Pals came back from 16 points down to level the count, 75-all, in regulation and put away the Hoopstars in extension.

The All-American Hoopstars had more fastbreak points, 14-6, more field goal attempts, 80-67, more assists, 16-9, and more second chance points, 16-13 but the Phone Pals hit more turnover points, 30-20, and free throws, 26-13, and were tougher down the stretch.

The Hoopstars led, 41-30, at the half. Guard Kendrick Cornelius shot 19 points and 6-7 Johnny Parker of Missouri added 17 for the losers. Other key players in coach Kermit Pemberton’s rotation were Jay (Boogie) Brantley of the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Kenny Crudup of California State at San Bernardino, 6-10 Doug Whittler of Moorehouse and Gene Myvett of California State at Los Angeles.

In Talk ‘N’ Text’s first game last Friday, the Phone Pals lost a 79-69 verdict to Play 2 Win.

The game almost didn’t push through because of a mix-up in schedules. Organizers failed to inform the Phone Pals the tip-off was moved up from 5 to 3 p.m.

Play 2 Win was led by 6-10 Kenny Whitehead of James Madison with 15 points, 6-9 B. J. Puckett of Clayton State with 13, 6-7 Tarron Williams of California State at San Bernardino with 13 and 6-6 Midwin Francis of Northeastern State with 10.

Alapag had 17 points and Allado, 13 points and five rebounds. Taulava compiled nine points and seven rebounds.

"Coach Derick (Pumaren) was happy with the way we played," said Allado. "We tried our very best and even though the guys are still jet-lagged and got disrupted with the schedule, we still showed effort and resilience and played good defense, forcing Play 2 Win to commit 19 turnovers."

gameface_one
07-19-2006, 07:39 AM
Chot wary over RP 5’s dilemma
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 07/19/2006

National coach Chot Reyes said yesterday the country’s continuing suspension by the Federation Internationale de Basketball (FIBA) is ruining plans of forming a competitive team for next year’s Asian qualifiers to earn a ticket to the 2008 Olympics.

Reyes arrived the other day from Taiwan where he led a hastily formed aspirants squad to sixth place in the eight-team Jones Cup. It was a disappointing finish but the Philippine team’s 3-6 overall record was not unexpected.

"We can’t go on this way, not knowing what direction to take because we’re still in limbo because of the FIBA suspension," said Reyes. "We’ll sit down as soon as possible with (PBA) Commissioner (Noli) Eala to seriously review our plan of action. We’ve now lost whatever gains we achieved in training for the FIBA-Asia qualifiers to earn slots for the World Championships."

The suspension disqualified the Philippines from playing in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) eliminations for the FIBA-Asia qualifiers to the World Championships and made academic the progress the national team gained in playing at the Global Hoops Summit in Las Vegas, the Jones Cup and the Sultan’s Cup in Brunei last year.

Reyes said even if the suspension is now lifted and the Philippines is allowed to play at the Asian Games in Doha late this year, he’s not sure if a competitive team can still be formed.

"Our momentum is gone," said Reyes. "The countries playing in Doha have already formed their teams and they’re now preparing for the Asian Games. In our case, we don’t even know what’s going to happen to us."

Reyes said the team he brought to Taipei last week had the benefit of only six practices and never hit its stride.

"The main thing was burnout because our pros just came from playing in the PBA, some of them like Mike Cortez, Dondon Hontiveros and Sonny Thoss fresh from a tough seven-game series," said Reyes. "In Taipei, we played nine games in nine days. There’s no other international tournament that makes teams play nine straight games without a break. Then, we had to teach the new guys, four amateurs, our system from scratch."

Reyes said he never had a complete team for the six practices. "We gave the players coming from the PBA playoffs a little break," said Reyes. "They needed the rest. When Willie (Miller) backed out at the last minute, we were lucky Ronald (Tubid) volunteered to take his spot the day before we left for Taipei."

Cortez and Thoss sat out the last three games in the Jones Cup because of injuries.

Reyes said the national team has been invited to play in three more international tournaments next month in Qatar, Singapore and Brunei.

full battle gear
07-23-2006, 09:27 AM
Chot’s RP five to play in Qatar

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 02:45am (Mla time) 07/23/2006

Published on page A23 of the July 23, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer


FAILING to create an impact in the Jones Cup, the PBA-backed national team will try to bounce back in a tournament featuring taller squads.

National coach Chot Reyes has confirmed the country’s participation in the Qatar Invitationals, a four-nation tournament from Aug. 1-6 where the Philippines will be pitted against the national teams of Angola, Latvia and Qatar.

“It’s a completely different look from Asian basketball,” said Reyes.

“In this tournament, height really matters so we’re bringing in a team with a good ceiling.”

San Miguel’s Dorian Peña, Billy Mamaril of Coca-Cola, Red Bull’s Mick Pennisi and Kerby Raymundo and Marc Pingris of Purefoods have already agreed to form part of the National’s frontline.

Larry Fonacier of Red Bull, Willie Miller of Talk ‘N Text, Coca-Cola’s Dennis Miranda will be taking care of the backcourt together with amateurs LA Tenorio of Ateneo and Arwind Santos of FEU.

Reyes said he’s trying to get the approval of the Air21 management before including Ronald Tubid and Niño Cañaleta in the lineup.

“Angola and Qatar are big teams which could test our resiliency in the shaded area while we will be introduced into the European style of play against Latvia,” said Reyes.

He pointed out that Qatar, which has an American coach, has built a world-caliber squad similar to the US national team. Composed of naturalized citizens, the Qatar national team is powered by two seven-footers and has a height average of 6-foot-5.

“Qatar really has the size but they encounter problems with Asian teams because of speed,” said Reyes. Chinese Taipei used its shooting and speed to defeat Qatar twice in the Jones Cup.

The Philippines placed sixth in the Jones Cup while Athletes in Action, a team made up of US NCAA stalwarts who had played a series of tuneup games at the Ynares Center, captured the crown after beating host Taipei.

Chinese-Taipei was powered by Chen Shih-an, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard who saw action in the NBA summer league for the Sacramento Kings and the American Basketball Association for the Orange County Crush squad.

“It’s the experience of playing those teams that really mattered,” said Reyes. “Every time we play stronger teams from other countries, it teaches something about ourselves.”

gameface_one
07-30-2006, 12:40 PM
RP team flies to Doha to battle Qataris, Latvia, Angola


BY JOEL ORELLANA, The Manila Times Reporter

The national men’s team departs on Monday morning to compete in the Qatar Invitational Basketball Tournament on August 1 to 6 in Doha.

On Saturday RP mentor Chot Reyes named the 12 hopefuls who will carry the country’s colors in the four-nation tournament that includes the host Qatar, Latvia and Angola.

Six aspirants who had stints in the William Jones Cup in Taiwan were carried over in the squad: pro-bound amateur stars Arwind Santos, Abraham Santos, Joseph Yeo and LA Tenorio and sophomore pros Niño Canaleta and Dennis Miranda.

Kerby Raymundo of the Philippine Cup champion Purefoods Chunkee will join them along with Alaska’s Willie Miller, Mick Pennisi and Larry Fonacier of Red Bull, San Miguel Beer’s Dorian Peña and Billy Mamaril of Coca-Cola.

Besides Reyes, other members of the coaching staff are Binky Favis, Aboy Castro and D’jalma Arnedo.

Reyes said he opted for a bigger squad to keep abreast with the competition, as the national teams of their rivals are known to be taller and more athletic than other Asian rivals like China, Korea and Japan.

gameface_one
08-02-2006, 07:59 AM
Team RP begins title hunt against Qatar

The Philippine Star 08/02/2006

Team Philippines plunges into action in the Al-Emadi International basketball tournament today, hoping to come out strong against fancied Qatar and set in motion its bid in the week-long event among four teams at the Gharafa Club gym.

Kerby Raymundo of the newly crowned PBA Philippine Cup champion team Purefoods and Willie Miller of Alaska head the crack Team RP clashing with the national teams of Angola, Latvia and Qatar in one of the many international tournaments lined up for SMC-Team Pilipinas.

A sudden change in schedule actually threw national team coach Chot Reyes’ preparations in disarray as Angola, which Team Pilipinas was supposed to play in yesterday’s opener, failed to arrive on time, thus resetting the RP-Angola match to Friday.

"Aug. 4 is supposed to be a rest day in preparation for the crossover semifinals. But we will now have to play on that day, thus we will now face a semis opponent without the benefit of a rest while the other team would be coming off a one-day break," said Reyes.

Still, the RP team mentor said his wards remain optimistic even as they vowed to find a way to win against the world-class opposition.

Backstopping the squad, whose stint is sponsored by San Miguel Corp., are Larry Fonacier, Niño Canaleta, Billy Mamaril, Rafi Reavis, Dorian Peña, Mick Pennisi, Dennis Miranda and this year’s top PBA Draft prospects Arwind Santos, Joseph Yeo and LA Tenorio.

Team Pilipinas faces Latvia on Thursday and then takes on Angola on Friday. The top team in the elims will meet the No. 4 squad while the second best team battles the No. 3 squad in the crossover semis. The winners clash for the title on Sunday.

"This is a great opportunity for us because we get to play Qatar again, and we all know Qatar is one of the best teams in Asia today," said Reyes. "Then, we get a feel of both African and European basketball in Angola and Latvia. All three are very, very tough opponents, but we can only get better playing teams like these as often as we can."

Qatar placed third in the last FIBA-Asia championships and is staging the tournament as a tuneup for its national team before it participates in the World Basketball Championships to be held in Japan in three weeks.

The team’s average height is 6-31Ú2, two to three inches shorter than their rivals but the Nationals hope to make up for this disadvantage with their speed and hustle.

After the Qatar trip, SMC-Pilipinas will engage FIBA-Asia runner-up Lebanon in a two-game series on Aug. 13 and 16. Two days after, the Nationals will fly to Brunei to defend the Sultan’s Cup crown against some of the best club teams in Asia.

gameface_one
08-02-2006, 08:15 AM
'Pilipinas Basketball to live on sans FIBA nod'
abs-cbnnews.com


Even if Pilipinas Basketball does not gain the International Basketball Federation’s recognition, the group will continue to exist and pursue its plans and programs, Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Noli Eala said on Tuesday.

"Pilipinas Basketball will continue even without FIBA recognition. This is the commitment of the stakeholders," said Eala at the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum at the Pantalan Restaurant in Manila.

Eala is one of the proponents of the new basketball group endorsed by the Philippine Olympic Committee as the replacement of the Basketball Association of the Philippines, which was dropped from the POC roster on June 30, 2005.

FIBA subsequently suspended the Philippines from all its sanctioned tournaments, although there are reports that it will be lifted soon, possibly during the FIBA Congress in Saitama, Japan, in late August.

Eala said the POC has invited Pilipinas Basketball to come up with a presentation that it intends to show at the FIBA meeting.

"The POC hopes to show to FIBA that the group has wide representation of the basketball stakeholders in the country," he said.

Eala, however, was unaware if the POC would be sending a delegation to the FIBA Congress, or if it was invited to the affair.Bong Pedralvez

gameface_one
08-03-2006, 07:54 AM
Team Pilipinas takes on Qatar national five



Inquirer
Last updated 04:16am (Mla time) 08/03/2006

Published on page A24 of the August 3, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

DOHA, Qatar -- Filipinos in this oil-rich state, who have been aching to see their national basketball team in action, will have to wait one day more.

African champion Angola failed to make it in time for the opening of the Al-Emadi International basketball tournament Tuesday, forcing organizers to change the schedule of the week-long, four-nation cagefest.

SMC-Team Pilipinas, which was supposed to take on Angola on opening day, battles host Qatar first instead at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday (Thursday in Manila) at the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall here.

The Nationals then face the tall and hefty Latvian national team Thursday before winding up their elimination round schedule against Angola on Friday, which was originally set as a rest day.

“The new schedule is tougher for us,” said SMC-Team Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes, who celebrated his birthday Tuesday. “It means that we will have to play five straight games -- from Wednesday to Sunday. The crucial point comes on Saturday when we play the semis. That will be our fourth game in as many days and we may play a team which is coming off a rest day.”

But the development also has its upside.

“The good thing about it is we’ll have an extra day to practice. This team barely had a week’s practice together and the change allows us to have two days of practice here with a complete lineup,” Reyes explained.

The new schedule also gives Rafi Reavis time to rest his travel-weary body. He made the nine-hour trip to this capital city of Qatar seven hours after flying into Manila from the United States.

The Filipinos are in high spirits, with playmaker Dennis Miranda spending quality time with his family on their first day of stay. His parents and sister have been residing in Qatar for the past decade and they lost no time visiting the Coca-Cola point guard at the Marriott Hotel where the team is billeted.

“Mabibigat ang kalaban dito pero siyempre gagawin naming lahat ng makakaya namin para sa mga kababayan natin dito (The field is tough but we will do our best for our countrymen here),” said veteran Willie Miller, referring to the roughly 80,000 Filipinos working in Qatar.

The Nationals paid a courtesy call on Vice Consul Jabbar Adiong at the Philippine Embassy before plunging into practice Tuesday.

gameface_one
08-04-2006, 08:09 AM
RP cagers fall to Qataris

Coach Reyes ejected after 2 technicals


Inquirer
Last updated 03:56am (Mla time) 08/04/2006

Published on page A26 of the August 4, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

DOHA, Qatar -- SMC-Pilipinas jumped the gun on Qatar, but couldn’t get over the bum calls and the ejection of head coach Chot Reyes, allowing the hosts to pull off a 77-58 win Wednesday in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship here.

The loss disappointed overseas Filipino workers who filled the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall to the rafters to watch the Nationals’ debut in the four-nation tourney.

The fans nonetheless had a grand time cheering on SMC-Pilipinas and posing for pictures with the players after the game.

Willie Miller took control from the opening tap, mocking the bigger Qataris’ defense and presiding over an 11-5 start that had the crowd in a total frenzy.

But Qatar, getting its big men to work inside after Kerby Raymundo picked up his second foul, clawed its way back.

With prospective first round draftees LA Tenorio and Joseph Yeo on the floor, SMC-Pilipinas fell into a maze of errors in consecutive offensives, and Qatar lost no time unleashing a crippling 12-1 run that transformed a 28-28 standoff into a 40-29 bulge at the half.

Aided by calls and non-calls that went their way, the hosts built a 15-point lead at 44-29. But the Filipinos bucked the spotty officiating, cutting the deficit to 37-48 and appeared headed for a run until a Greek referee slapped a technical foul on Reyes.

Reyes stormed to the hardcourt to approach the referee and ask why he was given a technical for simply jumping and walking to the end of the bench. He earned a second technical and a trip to the dugout.

Qatar converted the four free throws awarded for the two fouls and it was all downhill for the Filipinos from there.

“I take full responsibility for what happened,” said Reyes. “I shouldn’t have done that. Pero grabe naman talaga. Nakita naman ng mga tao ‘yun (But the calls were really bad and the crowd saw that).”

After the game, Reyes went over to the Greek referee to ask why he was given the first technical. An argument ensued, with the referee telling Reyes he can’t react and jump because “what are you, an animal?”

To compound the Nationals’ woes, the coaster assigned to the team was given to the Qatar squad. The Filipinos later rode with Filipino fans on the way to Central Café where vice consul Jabbar Adiong hosted dinner for them.

gameface_one
08-04-2006, 08:15 AM
Chot ejected as Qatar routs RP
mb.com.ph





DOHA, QATAR — Instead of breathing dry desert air and clashing with a biased Greek referee, SMC-Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes is probably wishing he’s back home getting introduced to his new PBA ball club.



The national team’s campaign in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship got off to a inauspicious start Wednesday after it lost to the host squad, 77-58, and suffered through the ejection of Reyes over his reaction to bad calls.

Worse, coasters assigned to the RP team were given the Qataris, replaced by dilapidated jalopies.

The loss disappointed Filipino fans, mostly OFWs and their families who filled the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall to the rafters to watch the Nationals’ debut in the fournation tourney.

Willie Miller took control early, mocking the bigger Qataris’ defense and presiding over an 11-5 start that had the crowd in a frenzy.

But Qatar, getting its big men to work inside after Kerby Raymundo picked up his second foul, muscled its way back.

With prospective first round draftees LA Tenorio and Joseph Yeo on the floor, SMC-Pilipinas fell into a maze of errors on consecutive offensives, and Qatar lost no time in unleashing a 12-1 run that transformed a 28-28 standoff to a 40-29 bulge at the half.

Aided by calls and noncalls that went their way, the hosts built a 15-point lead at 44-29.

The Filipinos bucked the spotty officiating, cutting the deficit to 37-48 and appeared headed for a run until a Greek referee slapped a technical foul on Reyes.

Reyes stormed to the hardcourt to ask the referee why he was given a technical for jumping and striding to the end of the bench, earning a second technical.

Qatar converted the four free throws awarded for the infraction and the Filipinos cascaded downhill from there.

"I take full responsibility for what happened. I shouldn’t have done that. Pero grabe naman talaga. Nakita naman ng mga tao yun," said Reyes, named recently as San Miguel Beer coach. "I just wish we could play them again. This is a team we can really beat."

After the game, Reyes went over to the Greek official to demand an explanation.

An argument ensued, with the referee telling Reyes he can’t react and jump because "what are you, an animal?"

To compound the Nationals’ woes, the coaster assigned to the team was given to the Qatar squad, forcing the Filipinos to ride with their compatriots on the way to Central Café where vice consul Jabbar Adiong hosted dinner for the team.

gameface_one
08-04-2006, 08:16 AM
Bad calls, Chot’s ejection lead to loss vs Qatar
abs-cbnnews.com

DOHA, Qatar - The night started out perfectly for SMC-Pilipinas, but didn’t quite have the proper ending.

The Filipinos jumped the gun on Qatar, but couldn’t get over the bum calls and the ejection of head coach Chot Reyes, allowing the hosts to pull off a 77-58 win Wednesday in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship here.

The loss disappointed the Filipinos who filled the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall to the rafters to watch the Nationals’ debut in the four-nation tourney. The fans, mostly overseas Filipino workers and their families, nonetheless had a grand time cheering SMC-Pilipinas on and posing for pictures with the players after the game.

Willie Miller took control from the opening tap, mocking the bigger Qataris’ defense and presiding over an 11-5 start that had the crowd in a total frenzy.

But Qatar, getting its big men to work inside after Kerby Raymundo picked up his second foul, clawed its way back.

With prospective first-round draftees LA Tenorio and Joseph Yeo on the floor, SMC-Pilipinas fell into a maze of errors on consecutive offensives, and Qatar lost no time in unleashing a crippling 12-1 run that transformed a 28-28 standoff to a 40-29 bulge at the half.

Aided by calls and non-calls that went their way, the hosts built a 15-point lead at 44-29. But the Filipinos bucked the spotty officiating, cutting the deficit to 37-48, and appeared headed for a run until a Greek referee slapped a technical foul on Reyes.

Reyes stormed to the hard court to approach the referee and ask why he was given a technical for simply jumping and walking to the end of the bench, earning for himself a second technical and a trip to the showers.

Qatar converted the four free throws awarded for the two technical fouls, and it was downhill for the Filipinos from that point on.

"I take full responsibility for what happened. I shouldn’t have done that. But it was just too much. The people saw it," said Reyes. "I just wish we could play them again. This is a team we can really beat."

After the game, Reyes went over to the same Greek referee to ask why he was given the first technical. An argument ensued, with the referee telling Reyes he can’t react and jump because "what are you, an animal?"

To compound the Nationals’ woes, the coaster assigned to the team was given to the Qatar squad. A couple of dilapidated vans were dispatched in its stead, but rather than use them, the Filipinos opted to ride with Filipino fans on the way to Central Café, where vice-consul Jabbar Adiong hosted dinner for the team.

gameface_one
08-05-2006, 11:29 AM
Latvians beat RP, but Chot still smiling
abs-cbnnews.com


DOHA, Qatar - The scoreboard had the San Miguel Corp.-Pilipinas team at the wrong end of the tally, but all Filipino players and coaches moved out of the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall with heads up high and smiling from ear to ear.

The smaller SMC-RP five pushed Latvia to the brink before the Europeans escaped with a 73-65 victory Thursday night in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship here.

The win gave Latvia an unblemished 3-0 card and top seeding in the semifinals of this four-nation tourney. SMC-Pilipinas absorbed its second setback in as many assignments.

National coach Chot Reyes, however, couldn’t be happier with the way his wards battled the taller and heftier Latvians on both ends of the floor.

"I’m very, very happy and very proud of the guys. They did a great, great job out there," Reyes said after the game. "We were getting our shots and not turning the ball over and that’s what we wanted."

Like in their opening game against host Qatar, the Filipinos, also backed by Accel, got off to a good start. Arwind Santos and Kerby Raymundo hit their stride early and SMC-Pilipinas took the first quarter, 18-14.

Latvia got its rhythm late in the second quarter, unloading an 8-0 bomb in the last minute that gave the league leaders a 42-33 lead at the half.

Kristaps Valters presided over another big tear in the third to make it 54-37. But just as Latvia appeared headed for a blowout, SMC-Pilipinas stepped on the gas. Larry Fonacier, Willie Miller and Joseph Yeo teamed up in a searing rally that had the Nationals breathing down the Latvians’ necks, 56-60, early in the final period.

SMC-Pilipinas engaged Latvia toe-to-toe but clutch baskets by big man Uvis Helmanis kept the Filipinos at bay in the closing minutes.

"We’re definitely achieving our goals," Reyes said. "For both the players and coaches, this is the kind of teams we really want to play. And for the players, they can only get better playing teams like Latvia.

"Also, we’re actually using this tournament as some sort of a tryout to see who can really be on the team just in case the FIBA suspension is lifted. All of the people we’ve talked to here are saying it’s already lifted, so we might as well be ready for that eventuality."

After the disappointing loss to Qatar, the gallant stand of the Filipinos against Latvia was certainly a boost.

"We were a lot better today than we were last night against Qatar. The challenge is how we can still be better in our next game," said Reyes.

SMC-Pilipinas takes on African champion Angola Friday to close its elimination round schedule.

The scores:

LATVIA 73—S. Valters, 15, Helmanis 12, Janicenoks 11, K. Valters 9, Ciprus 7, Jahovics 5, Vecelous 4, Timermanis 4, Buskevics 3, Blums 3.

SMC-PILIPINAS 65—Raymundo 12, Miller 11, Fonacier 8, Santos 7, Yeo 7, Pennisi 7, Reavis 5, Tenorio 3, Canaleta 3, Pena 2, Mamaril 0, Miranda 0.

Quarters: 14-18, 42-33, 59-54, 73-65.

gameface_one
08-05-2006, 11:31 AM
San Miguel-RP absorbs second straight setback



Inquirer
Last updated 02:01am (Mla time) 08/05/2006

Published on page A22 of the August 5, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

DOHA, Qatar -- The SMC-Pilipinas squad pushed Latvia to the limit before bowing, 73-65, in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship here Thursday.

The win gave Latvia an unblemished 3-0 card and the top seeding in the semifinals of the four-nation tournament.

SMC-Pilipinas, for its part, absorbed its second setback in as many assignments.

National coach Chot Reyes was visibly gratified with the way his wards battled the heftier Latvians on both ends of the floor.

“I’m very, very happy and very proud of the guys,” Reyes said after the game. “We were getting our shots and not turning the ball over.”

The Filipinos, also backed by Accel, got off to a good start. Arwind Santos and Kerby Raymundo hit their stride early and SMC-Pilipinas took the first quarter, 18-14.

Latvia got its rhythm late in the second quarter, unloading an 8-0 bomb in the last minute that gave the league leaders a 42-33 edge at the half.

Kristaps Valters presided over another big tear in the third to make it 54-37. But just as Latvia appeared headed for a blowout, SMC-Pilipinas stepped on the gas. Larry Fonacier, Willie Miller and Joseph Yeo teamed up in a searing rally that had the Nationals moving within 56-60.

The scores:

LATVIA 73 -- S. Valters, 15, Helmanis 12, Janicenoks 11, K. Valters 9, Ciprus 7, Jahovics 5, Vecelous 4, Timermanis 4, Buskevics 3, Blums 3.

SMC-RP 65 -- Raymundo 12, Miller 11, Fonacier 8, Santos 7, Yeo 7, Pennisi 7, Reavis 5, Tenorio 3, Canaleta 3, Pena 2, Mamaril 0, Miranda 0.

Quarters: 14-18, 42-33, 59-54, 73-65

gameface_one
08-05-2006, 11:34 AM
RP cagers lose to Latvia but coach satisfied

The Philippine Star 08/05/2006

SMC-Pilipinas absorbed its second straight setback in the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship, bowing to Latvia, 65-73, Thursday night at the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall in Doha, Qatar.

Unlike in their 58-77 loss to Qatar Wednesday, however, RP team coach Chot Reyes said he was satisfied with the way his wards battled the taller and heftier Latvians on both ends of the floor.

"I’m very, very happy and very proud of the guys. They did a great, great job out there," Reyes said. "We were getting our shots and not turning the ball over and that’s what we wanted."

The victory gave Latvia an unblemished 3-0 card and top seeding in the semifinals of this four-nation tourney. SMC-Pilipinas, for its part, fell to 0-2 and will try to finish the elims with a victory over Angola Friday night.

The crossover semis will pit the No. 1 team against the last placed squad with the Nos. 2 and 3 teams clashing for the other final berth.

Like in their opening game against Qatar, the Filipinos, whose stint is sponsored by San Miguel Corp. and backed by Accel, got off to a good start behind Arwind Santos and Kerby Raymundo, who powered the team to an 18-14 lead after the first quarter.

But the Latvians found their rhythm late in the second period, unloading an 8-0 run in the last minute to grab a 42-33 lead at the half.

Kristaps Valters presided over another big Latvia attack in the third to make it 54-37. But just as the Latvians thought they had heard the last of the Filipinos, SMC-Pilipinas fought back behind Larry Fonacier, Willie Miller and Joseph Yeo.

The troika combined in a big RP counterattack that had the Nationals bouncing back to within, 56-60, early in the final period.

SMC-Pilipinas then traded baskets with Latvia to keep it close but clutch baskets by big man Uvis Helmanis kept the Filipinos at bay in the closing minutes.

"We’re definitely achieving our goals," Reyes said. "For both the players and coaches, this is the kind of teams we really want to play. And for the players, they can only get better playing teams like Latvia.

"Also, we’re actually using this tournament as some sort of a tryout to see kung sino talaga ang puwede just in case the FIBA suspension is lifted," he aadded

All of the people we’ve talked to here are saying it’s already lifted, so we might as well be ready for that eventuality."

Truly, after that disappointing loss to Qatar, the gutsy stand put up by the Filipinos against Latvia was certainly a big boost.

"We were a lot better today than we were last night against Qatar. The challenge is how we can still be better in our next game," said Reyes.

gameface_one
08-07-2006, 07:53 AM
Latvians throttle weary SMC-RP quintet
abs-cbnnews.com



DOHA, Qatar - The fatigue factor coming into play, elimination round-topnotcher Latvia scored an easy 118-70 win over SMC-Pilipinas Saturday in the semifinals of the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship at the Al-Gharafa Sports Club Hall here.

The Latvians, thus, earned a trip to the championship match Sunday opposite African champion Angola, which downed Qatar in the other semifinal, 75-62. The Filipinos actually battled Latvia on equal footing in the early minutes and trailed by only three after the first 10 minutes of play, 25-28.

But coach Chot Reyes’ wards, who were playing their fourth game in four nights, faded soon after, with the Latvians scoring on easy transition baskets en route to a 63-46 bulge at the half.

SMC-Pilipinas just couldn’t keep in step when Latvia resumed its torrid shooting pace in the second half. Six-foot-nine Uvis Helmanis, who had 22 points to lead six Latvians in double figures, presided over a crippling tear that stretched the lead further to 97-59 after three quarters of play.

"The rest really told a lot, and that is the reason why I didn’t want to play the new schedule," Reyes said, pointing out that Latvia was fresh from a day off coming into the semis.

"Don’t get me wrong. It’s very hard to beat Latvia even if we had a rest day had we followed the original schedule. But it could have been a much closer game."

To show how sharp a team the Filipinos were up against, Latvia hit 61 percent (17-of-28) of their three-pointers, even higher than their shooting clip of 57 percent (24-of-42) from two-point region. "We actually started very well," Reyes said. "But they shot 60 percent of their shots, both 2- and 3-pointers, showing effects of their day off. That just shows how much better their legs were."

SMC-Pilipinas plays Qatar on Sunday for third place. In their elimination round faceoff, the hosts won 77-58 after Reyes was ejected for two technical fouls.

"Again my worry is the fatigue factor since we’re playing our fifth straight game and the effort we will expend is not the same as the effort Qatar will expend," said Reyes.

The scores:

Latvia 118—Helmanis 22, Ciprus 17, Buskevics 13, Timermanis 12, Vtols 11, K. Valters 11, Grafs 8, Jahovics 8, Vecelous 6, Blums 4, S. Valters 4, Janicenoks 2.

SMC-Pil 70—Miller 13, Pena 11, Pennisi 11, Tenorio 7, Raymundo 6, Miranda 5, Reavis 4, Mamaril 4, Santos 4, Canaleta 3, Yeo 2, Fonacier 0.

Quarters: 28-25, 63-46, 97-59, 118-70.

gameface_one
08-08-2006, 10:55 AM
Lesson in humility
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 08/08/2006

National basketball coach Chot Reyes said yesterday playing in the Al Emadi international championships in Qatar was "an invaluable learning experience" and because of the tough competition, the Philippine team will be better prepared for the Asian Games late this year if the Federation Internationale de Basketball (FIBA) lifts the country’s suspension and clears the way for participation.

The Philippines was winless in five games in the tournament. It remains to be seen whether the lesson in humility will benefit the national team in the long run.

In the preliminary round, the nationals lost to Qatar by 19, Latvia by eight and Angola by 15. Latvia repeated over the Philippines, 118-70, in the crossover semifinals and Reyes called the 48-point loss the worst of his career. Qatar came back from a 10-point halftime deficit to whip the Philippines, 79-68, in the battle for third last Sunday.

Reyes said the lifting of the suspension by FIBA appears imminent. The FIBA Central Board will convene during the World Championships in Japan this month and Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) officials are expected to make an appearance in the meeting to appeal for the end of the ban.

"We showed we can play well against teams with size and athletic ability," said Reyes. "I’m very, very happy and proud of our guys. We’re definitely achieving our goals. For the players and coaches, this is the kind of teams we really need to play. We can only get better for it." * * *
Reyes said the team’s baptism of fire against host Qatar was a lesson in coping with adversity.

In the third period, he was ejected by the Greek referee who later called him an animal.

"After five downright atrocious calls, I jumped off my seat and strode to the end of our bench," recounted Reyes. "I didn’t say anything to the two referees in front of our bench. I didn’t shout or didn’t enter the playing court but the third referee, a Greek, whistled me for a technical foul from the other end of the court. This was the last straw. I walked into the court to ask him what I did to deserve the technical, forcing him to throw me out of the game.

"We were never in the game after that. At the end of the game, I approached the referee again to ask him, in a very polite way, what I did to deserve the technical. He answered, "you jumped." So I said, "so what if I jumped?" I didn’t yell or curse at the refs. I didn’t enter the playing court. In fact, I walked to the end of our bench precisely to avoid doing anything untoward. His reply shocked me. "Are you human or are you an animal?" To this, I shouted at him, "who are you calling an animal?" And he was yelling something back. Thankfully, cooler heads intervened."

Reyes said officiating was poor from the start but it got worse in the first four minutes of the third period as the team was about to make a run behind a full-court press.

Reyes singled out clear instances of unfair calls.

"Arwind Santos stole the ball and was about to start his stride for a breakaway when his man embraced him from behind, giving up a duty foul," said Reyes. "But the ref didn’t make a call. Qatar stole back and scored as we were going the other way.

"Then, in a trap, Denok Miranda stole but after two dribbles, the refs called a foul on him. In the next play, Qatar crossed the backcourt with 14 seconds left on the shot clock but there was no eight-second violation called. A few plays alter, Willie Miller drove to the hoop and the ball was deflected. Willie got it back, threw it to Mick (Pennisi) who hit a three but the refs nullified it, saying Willie stepped on the line to saving the ball. This was when I jumped off my seat."

Reyes said Qatar’s Khaled Suleyman admitted the officiating was awful.

Qatar assistant coach Stacey Hallowell and star forward Erfan Ali Saeed, a Senegal naturalized player, even apologized to Reyes.

"Filipinos working with the TV crew covering the game said Qatar TV was reprimanded by the Qatar Basketball Federation for clearly showing Willie’s foot was nowhere near the baseline when he was called for stepping," said Reyes. * * *
Worse, organizers pulled out the spacious coaster that brought the team to the stadium and sent three dilapidated vans for the ride back to the hotel after a 30-minute wait. Reyes refused to allow the team to board the vans which were not air-conditioned and had torn upholstery and a rusty exterior.

When a tournament official asked Reyes why he wouldn’t board, the coach said, "Will you allow your family to ride that thing — we are the Philippine national team, we deserve better."

In true bayanihan fashion, Filipino fans who watched the game offered their cars to transport the team to the Central Cafe where Philippine Embassy vice-consul Jabbar Adiong hosted a late dinner.

In the first Latvia game, the Philippines was badly outrebounded, 52-30, and outscored from the free throw line, 30-15. But the Nationals were within striking distance until the final buzzer.

In the third quarter, the Filipinos came back from a 17-point deficit to cut the margin to four behind a surge ignited by Larry Fonacier and Joseph Yeo.

"The fourth quarter was played with no team giving an inch and we were in the thick of the fight all the way until we missed three straight layups near the end that sealed our doom," said Reyes. "In my post-game talk, all I could say was, ‘yan ang basketball, ganyan ang Pinoy.’ This was how we play the game."

gameface_one
08-09-2006, 08:42 AM
BAP chooses to keep mum over RP five debacles



Inquirer
Last updated 03:39am (Mla time) 08/09/2006

Published on page A25 of the August 9, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

RATHER than touch on the floundering campaigns of the Pilipinas Basketball-backed national team abroad, rival group Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP) is keeping mum for some reason.

BAP president Joey Lina yesterday declined comment on the debacles of the national team that saw action in both the William Trent Jones Cup in Taiwan and the recent Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship in Doha, Qatar.

Lina said only that the BAP -- which has been locked in a row with the Philippine Olympic Committee over its suspension from the local Olympic body -- will be sending an official to the FIBA (international basketball federation) World Congress in Japan this month.

“We will be there because we are a regular member,” he said.

FIBA continues to recognize the BAP as the country’s sport association. However, FIBA has suspended the Philippines from competing in FIBA-sanctioned tournaments due to a dispute between the BAP and Pilipinas Basketball.

Still, Pilipinas Basketball has been fielding a national team composed of Philippine Basketball Association cagers and amateur standouts in invitational tourneys.

Recently, a national team carrying the colors of San Miguel Corp. finished dead-last in Doha after dropping all its five games.

The Philippines also had a fruitless campaign in Taipei, Taiwan, losing four of its five outings in the Jones Cup last month. Jasmine W. Payo

AnthonyServinio
08-10-2006, 01:15 AM
BAP chooses to keep mum over RP five debacles



Inquirer
Last updated 03:39am (Mla time) 08/09/2006

Published on page A25 of the August 9, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

RATHER than touch on the floundering campaigns of the Pilipinas Basketball-backed national team abroad, rival group Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP) is keeping mum for some reason.

BAP president Joey Lina yesterday declined comment on the debacles of the national team that saw action in both the William Trent Jones Cup in Taiwan and the recent Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship in Doha, Qatar.
The camp of the Chinese-controlled BAP should definitely shut up since the performances of the teams they have sent in the past are far worse. We need not enumerate their long list of inept teams handled by equally inept coaches like Johny Tam.

Gym_Rat
08-10-2006, 07:29 AM
BAP chooses to keep mum over RP five debacles



Inquirer
Last updated 03:39am (Mla time) 08/09/2006

Published on page A25 of the August 9, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

RATHER than touch on the floundering campaigns of the Pilipinas Basketball-backed national team abroad, rival group Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP) is keeping mum for some reason.

BAP president Joey Lina yesterday declined comment on the debacles of the national team that saw action in both the William Trent Jones Cup in Taiwan and the recent Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship in Doha, Qatar.
The camp of the Chinese-controlled BAP should definitely shut up since the performances of the teams they have sent in the past are far worse. We need not enumerate their long list of inept teams handled by equally inept coaches like Johny Tam.


Had the BAP given way so as to pave the way for the reinstatement of the Philippines to FIBA, we wouldn't be sending just "aspirants" to foreign leagues for the much-needed "exposure" now, would we? We would have been sending our very best in tune-up matches in preparation for Doha.

Tama ka, they should shut up. Sila me kagagawan nito. We should demand more from them than just shutting up though. Malaki na ang kasalanan nila.

gameface_one
08-10-2006, 07:33 AM
Reyes says RP five learned a lot in Doha


By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 03:47am (Mla time) 08/10/2006

Published on page A22 of the August 10, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

THEY knew what to expect even from the start.

National coach Vincent “Chot” Reyes said the RP basketball team built around Philippine Basketball Association players got the learning experience it wanted despite winding up winless in a recent tournament in Qatar.

“We knew the outcome even before we left, given the competition we’re facing,” Reyes told the Inquirer a day after the Nationals arrived from the Al-Emadi International Basketball Championship in Doha.

“But I’m happy and proud of the players. As individuals and as a team, we’ve learned a lot,” added Reyes, who attended his first practice as San Miguel Beer coach yesterday.

Led by Talk ‘N Text’s Willie Miller, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull and Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, the RP squad finished dead last in a field of four after dropping all its five games.

Reyes and the Nationals lost to Angola in the elimination round and bowed to Latvia and Qatar twice.

Another PBA-backed RP team also had a fruitless stint in Taipei, Taiwan, in the William Trent Jones Cup last month, finishing sixth among eight teams.

“We knew it was going to be very difficult,” said Reyes of the Doha trip.

“In fact, I asked the team if we’re willing to face the possibility of traveling there and not winning at all.”

The answer to that, Reyes said, was the intensity and dedication the San Miguel Corp.-sponsored Nationals displayed even in the face of imminent defeat.

The Philippines was forced to play five games for five straight days after Angola, the top team from Africa, arrived a day late for the tournament. The Nationals were supposed to have a one-day break following three elimination-round games.

“Playing five straight games took its toll on the team. Though we didn’t bring the best team, the trip was worth it because of the knowledge and experience that we gained out of it,” said Reyes.

gameface_one
08-11-2006, 09:36 AM
PBA can’t say who’ll play visiting Lebanese five


By GERALD PETER ARCE, The Manila Times Correspondent
abs-cbnnews.com



Lebanon’s national basketball team arrives Friday to play two tune-up games against Filipino squads before heading to the World Basketball Championships in Japan.

The problem is that the visitors don’t know who they’ll be playing against.

The RP team backed by the Philippine Basketball Association only has six players available to play the Lebanese, who are scheduled for matches on Sunday at 6 p.m. and Tuesday at 7 p.m.

In a statement, the PBA said a "hastily assembled" Philippine training team under coach Chot Reyes or one of the pro league’s ballclubs would be "asked to step in" for the games slated at the Araneta Coliseum.

"This will depend on the availability of the players," said Reyes, who presided over a team scrimmage Wednesday night at the Club 650 gym in Libis, Quezon City, using the only players he has available—Dennis Miranda, Mike Cortez, Sonny Thoss, Willie Miller, Billy Mamaril and Asi Taulava.

Reyes, who was recently appointed as head coach of the San Miguel Beer team, also said fielding a PBA team against the Lebanese is an option, "but you will have to talk to Commissioner [Noli] Eala about that."

On Thursday the Bureau of Immigration permitted the 25-member Lebanese team to enter the country for the tune-up matches they need before the World Championship next week in Saitama, Japan.

Despite the bloody Israel-Hezbollah conflict currently tearing up their country, the players are determined to prove that life can go on for most Lebanese. The team was invited to the country through Philippine Basketball Federation president Moying Martelino.

They will be arriving Friday from Jordan together with Lebanon Basketball Association head Michael Tannous at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport at around 2:20 p.m.

"As long as their documents are complete, there’s no problem about it. We have a good diplomatic relationship with Lebanon, and the arrival of their national squad certainly boosts our national basketball program," said Immigration Commissioner Al Fernandez, who is also chairman of the local athletics association.

Still, the Lebanese came at a bad time.

With less than three months to go before the start of the 2006-07 season, most PBA clubs are taking their training out of the country and hanging on to their key players, some of them members of the national team.

San Miguel Beer, for one, is unavailable to face Lebanon since it is leaving Friday for Taipei to compete in the Asian Professional Basketball tournament from August 11 to 19.

New PBA chairman Ricky Vargas said his team, Talk ’N Text, is committed to play in an international invitational tournament in Beijing two weeks from now, coinciding with the Brunei Cup where the Philippines is the defending champion.

"While we want to continue our support of the national team, we also need to attend to the needs of our team, which was the worst-performing ball club last conference," said Vargas.

The Lebanese are tough opponents for any local squad. They qualified for the World Championships in Indiana four years ago—although they finished dead last—and finished second to China in the Asian Basketball Confederation men’s championship.

gameface_one
08-11-2006, 09:38 AM
Top cagers beg off from RP team
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/11/2006

Several players may not be available to suit up for the Philippine team defending its crown in the Brunei Sultan Cup with most of the PBA ballclubs now in the thick of their respective buildups for the 2006-07 PBA season.

Talk n Text and Air21 are two teams which may not be able to lend players to the national squad due to conflict of schedule with the Brunei joust slated Aug. 19-27.

Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and Don Allado are the Talk n Text players and Niño Canaleta and brothers Yancy and Ranidel de Ocampo Air21 players being considered by coach Chot Reyes for the RP team which is to defend its crown in Brunei.

"We have supported the PBA for the national cause for so long. We may pass up this time," said Air21 team manager Lito Alvarez.

"We’re among the worst performing teams in the PBA right now. We’re looking to improve and we have a commitment to play in China," said Talk n Text governor Ricky Vargas.

"I understand the league’s commitment to form the best possible national team. If there will be no conflict in the schedule, then we may allow our players to play in Brunei," Vargas added.

Reyes can’t tap Barangay Ginebra players either since the Kings are also competing in Brunei.

Reyes and the San Miguel Beermen are departing for Taiwan today to play in the Asian Professional Basketball Championship there. The national mentor flies directly to Brunei after the Taiwan tournament.

Only six players in Mike Cortez, Willie Miller, Sonny Thoss, Billy Mamaril, Denok Miranda and Taulava showed up in the RP pool’s first practice session Wednesday since arriving from the Qatar invitational tourney.

Before leaving for Brunei, the RP team is to play Lebanon in two exhibition games here. The first game is set at 6 p.m. Sunday at the Astrodome and the second at 7 p.m. on Aug. 16 at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Lebanon squad is planing in today for the final stage of its buildup for the World Championship in Saitama, Japan set to start Aug. 19.

The Lebanese were able to sneak out of their country in the second week of the fierce Israel attack and pitched camp in Syria. They then went to Jordan to play a series of exhibition games against Jordan, Slovenia and Canada. They beat Canada by three points a few days back.

gameface_one
08-11-2006, 09:39 AM
Lebanese cagers here, but who’ll play them?



BY TITO TALAO
mb.com.ph



THE LEBANESE national basketball team arrives today from Jordan to play two games against Filipino teams for its final preparations prior to competing in the World Basketball Championship in Saitama, Japan starting Aug. 19.


Basketball officials are trying to assemble a Philippine training team or a regular Philippine Basketball Association ball club to play the Lebanese who left their war-torn country practically from the backdoor as Israeli and Hezbollah forces continued to raise the level of conflict in the area.

Lebanon qualified for the World Championship after placing second behind China in the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship.

While Lebanon managed to form a team despite the ongoing conflict, it might be difficult for the Philipines to put up a competitive team against the visitors.

"This will depend on the availability of the players," said RP Coach Chot Reyes, who presided over a team scrimmage Wednesday night at the Club 650 gym in Libis, Quezon City using just six players – Dennis Miranda of Coca-Cola, Mike Cortez, Sonny Thoss and Willie Miller of Alaska, Billy Mamaril of Ginebra, and Asi Taulava of Talk ’N Text.

Should a team composed of PBA players from different teams be unavailable in time for the exhibition matches on Aug. 13 (6 p.m.) at the Cuneta Astrodome and on Aug. 15 (7 p.m.) at the Araneta Coliseum, a pro team could be asked to step in.

"That’s an option," said Reyes, recently named head coach of the San Miguel Beermen. "But you will have to talk to Commissioner (Noli) Eala about that."

In that eventuality, however, San Miguel would not be able to make it as a replacement opponent for Lebanon since it is leaving today for Taipei to compete in the Asian Professional Basketball tournament from Aug. 11-19.

With less than three months to go before the start of the 2006-07 season, PBA ball clubs are hanging on to their key players as training and preparation hit high gear.

"While we want to continue our support of the national team, we also need to attend to the needs of our team which was the worst-performing ball club last conference," said Ricky Vargas, the newly-named PBA board chairman from the Talk ’N Text Phone Pals.

Vargas said the Phone Pals are committed to play in an international invitational tournament in Beijing two weeks from now, coinciding with the Brunei Cup where the Philippines is the defending champion.

Lito Alvarez, board representative of the Air21 Express, expressed a similar sentiment.

"We have supported the national team on a number of occasions," he said. "I think it’s about time some other teams get the opportunity."

As for Lebanon, the basketball players are determined to prove that life can go on despite the bloody conflict.

Israeli blockades have cut their home country off from the rest of the world and sports stadiums have been transformed into refugee camps.

But the basketball team have proved that sport in the country is not at a total standstill.

"This adventure is difficult for all the players but we all agreed that we had to take part in the world festival of basketball," the Lebanese Federation general secretary Ghassan Fares told AFP.

"We have to show the whole world this message that the Lebanese people won’t buckle, no matter the obstacles."

Before the conflict in Israel and Lebanon erupted last month, the team had already secured the funding to embark on a trip that took in warm-up tournaments in Istanbul, via Syria and Jordan, and Slovenia.

The Philippine trip is the final stop of that warm-up journey.

It would have been tempting to pack it all in given the inauspicious performance in Lebanon’s only other World Championships outing, four years ago in Indianapolis, USA.

Lebanon finished last, behind Algeria, having lost to Brazil, Turkey, Puerto Rico and Canada, as well as their Arab compatriots. (With report from AFP)

gameface_one
08-12-2006, 08:11 AM
PBA aces suit up for RP-Lebanon series
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/12/2006

The Philippine-Lebanon goodwill series is pushing through as scheduled after PBA ballclubs decided to field their top players for the dual meet slated tomorrow and Wednesday in two separate venues here.

Released by their respective clubs for the series are Jimmy Alapag, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava of Talk n Text, Mick Pennisi and Larry Fonacier of Red Bull, Willie Miller and Mike Cortez of Alaska Milk, Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril of Ginebra, Dennis Miranda of Coca-Cola and Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21.

The squad takes on the World Championship-bound Lebanon team at 6 p.m. tomorrow at the Astrodome and at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum. The Lebanese arrived yesterday.

Ateneo coach Norman Black will call the shots in place of national mentor Chot Reyes who left for Taiwan yesterday together with the San Miguel team seeing action in the Asian Professional Tourney. The Beermen will go up against top commercial teams from China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan among others.

"Looks like a solid team. It’s a commitment to the RP team that the ball clubs came forth and offered their players," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

The Nationals expect to go through a tough grind against Lebanese who are here for the final stage of their buildup for the World Championship in Saitama, Japan.

The Lebanese moved out of their war-torn country and pitched camp in Syria to prepare for the World event. They later played a series of games against Jordan, Slovenia, Canada and Germany before flying here yesterday.

The Lebanese, runners-up to China in the last two FIBA-Asia championships, are playing in the World Championship. for the second straight time.

Tickets for the games are pegged at P100 for ringside and P50 for lower box. General admission is free.

Meanwhile, the PBA board of governors leaves for Macau this morning for a three-day meeting where it would discuss proposed programs that hopefully will carry the league through next season.

The budget for the 2006-07 season, the national team program in the face of the country’s continued suspension by Fiba and the proposal for a charter change are up in the agenda of the conference hosted by new league member Welcoat Paints, headed by co-owners Terry Que and Raymund Yu.

gameface_one
08-12-2006, 08:12 AM
PBA teams save Lebanon series



By TITO TALAO
mb.com.ph




HONORING A commitment to support the cause of the national team, Talk ‘N Text, Red Bull, Alaska, Ginebra, Coca-Cola and Air21 yesterday agreed to lend four of their best players for the Philippines-Lebanon series.


Suiting up for the RP squad are Jimmy Alapag, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava of the Phone Pals, Mick Pennisi and Larry Fonacier of the Bulls, Willie Miller and Mike Cortez of the Aces, Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril of the Kings, Dennis Miranda of the Tigers, and Ranidel de Ocampo of the Express.

The return to the fold of the 12 Philippine Basketball Association stars allayed fears the Lebanon series, set Aug. 13 at the Cuneta Astrodome and Aug. 16 at the Araneta Coliseum, would go to waste.

Only six players attended team practice two days ago at Club 650 in Libis, Quezon City and national coach Chot Reyes had contemplated asking PBA commissioner Noli Eala to send in their place a regular pro ball club to face the Lebanese national team, the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship runner-up.

"Looks like a solid team," said Eala, who burned the phone lines with PBA teams the night before to help save the series. "It is a testament to their commitment to the RP team that the ball clubs came forth and offered their players."

Reyes, however, would be unavailable to coach the team, at least for tomorrow, due to a previous commitment by San Miguel Beer to play in an invitational pro tournament in Taipei.

SMB management named Reyes the new Beermen head coach a week ago, replacing Jong Uichico, who took over Siot Tanquingcen at Barangay Ginebra.

Norman Black, 1989 PBA Grand Slam coach with San Miguel and the current Ateneo Blue Eagles mentor, will sub for Reyes, who hopes to return by Aug. 16 in time for the second exhibition game.

Black, national coach during the 1994 Asian Games in Hiroshima, ran RP team practice the last two days.

Lebanon beat Canada, without Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic.

Tickets for the game is pegged at R100 for ringside and R50 for lower box. Gallery is free.

The delegation, which will then proceed to the World Championship in Saitama, Japan, arrived yesterday afternoon from Jordan via Qatar Airways and was billeted at the Crowne Plaza Galleria in Ortigas.

full battle gear
08-13-2006, 10:48 AM
PBA-backed Nationals vs Lebanese today

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 06:12am (Mla time) 08/13/2006

Published on page A24 of the August 13, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

UPHOLDING its commitment to support the national squad, six Philippine Basketball Association teams have agreed to lend their best players for the RP-Lebanon series starting today at the Cuneta Astrodome.

Talk ‘N Text has allowed Jimmy Alapag, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava to don the national colors along with Mick Pennisi and Larry Fonacier of Red Bull, Alaska’s Mike Cortez and Willie Miller and Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21.

Also suiting up for the RP squad are Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril of Barangay Ginebra and Coca-Cola’s Dennis Miranda in the two-game exhibition series many thought would be cancelled due to Lebanon’s ongoing armed conflict with Israel.

The Lebanese, Asia’s No. 2 team behind China, are on their way to the world basketball championship starting Aug. 19 in Saitama, Japan.

Only six players attended the RP team practice last week, forcing national coach Chot Reyes to ask help from the PBA through commissioner Noli Eala for the series, slated today at 6 p.m. and on Aug. 16 at the Araneta Coliseum, to push through.

Reyes had contemplated on asking Eala to replace the national team with a regular pro ball club to face the Lebanese national team, the Fiba-Asia Men’s Championship runner-up.

“Looks like a solid team,” said Eala, who burned the phone lines with PBA teams the night before to help save the series. “It is a testament to their commitment to the RP team that the ball clubs came forth and offered their players.”

Reyes, however, would be unavailable to coach the team, at least for today, due to a previous commitment by San Miguel Beer to play in an invitational pro tournament in Taipei.

SMB management had earlier named Reyes as new Beermen head coach a week ago, replacing Jong Uichico, who took over from Siot Tanquingcen at Barangay Ginebra.

Norman Black, 1989 PBA grand slam coach with San Miguel and the current Ateneo Blue Eagles mentor, will sub for Reyes, who hopes to return by Aug. 16 in time for the second exhibition game.

Black, national coach during the 1994 Asian Games in Hiroshima, supervised the RP team practice the last two days.

Tickets for the game is pegged at P100 for ringside and P50 for lower box. The upper box is open to the public.

Lebanon beat Canada, without Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic in exhibition games.

The Lebanese arrived Friday afternoon from Jordan via Qatar Airways. They are billeted at the Crowne Plaza Galleria in Ortigas.

full battle gear
08-13-2006, 01:40 PM
RP five tests Lebanon in first tuneup today

The Philippine Star 08/13/2006

The Philippines plays Lebanon today in the first of two exhibition matches designed to test the worthiness of the Lebanese national team for the FIBA World Championship.

The game is set at 6 p.m. at the Astrodome with ringside ticket pegged at P100, lower box P50 and gallery open to the public for free.

The Lebanese flew in from Jordan two nights ago aboard a Qatar Airways flight that returned to its point of origin after a reportedly deranged Ethiopian national created trouble inside the plane minutes after take-off.

The information was relayed by Lebanese official Michel Bayrouthy to PBA staffer Hazel Ancheta.

The Ethiopian reportedly attempted to harm one of the Lebanese players but was wrestled down and overcome by the other players.

The plane was on a transit flight to Qatar but returned to Jordan where the troublemaker was unloaded and taken into custody, delaying the flight’s arrival in Manila by some four hours.

The PBA was able to lower the cost of the tickets, according to PBA media bureau chief Willie Marcial, after Pasay City Mayor Peewee Trinidad agreed to lower, in turn, the rental cost of the venue to allow more fans to watch.

National coach Chot Reyes is expected to return from Taipei where his new team, San Miguel Beer, is competing in pro invitational tournament.

If his tight schedule prevents him from coming back for the game, RP-Hiroshima Games coach Norman Black will take over the reins.

Making up the RP team are Jimmy Alapag, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava of Talk n Text, Mick Pennisi and Larry Fonacier of Red Bull, Willie Miller and Mike Cortez of Alaska Milk, Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril of Ginebra, Dennis Miranda of Coca-Cola and Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21.

The second tune-up game for Lebanon is on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum, after which the Lebanese will fly to Saitama, Japan for the World Championship.

full battle gear
08-13-2006, 01:47 PM
PBA clubs boost RP squad vs. Lebanon
www.abs-cbnnews.com


Honoring a commitment to support the cause of the national team, Talk ’N Text, Red Bull, Alaska, Ginebra, Coca-Cola and Air21 have agreed to lend their best players for the Philippine-Lebanon goodwill series.

Suiting up for the RP squad are Jimmy Alapag, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava of the Phone Pals, Mick Pennisi and Larry Fona*cier of the Bulls, Willie Miller and Mike Cortez of the Aces, Rafi Reavis and Billy Mamaril of the Kings, Dennis Miranda of the Tigers, and Ranidel de Ocampo of the Express.

The return to the fold of the 12 Philippine Basketball Association stars allayed fears that the Lebanon series, set Sunday at the Cuneta Astrodome and Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum, would go to waste.

As a treat for basketball fans hoping to watch a Filipino team go up against a world-caliber squad live, the gallery section will be free to the public, while tickets to the special ringside and lower box sections will be sold at discounted prices of P100 and P50, respectively.

Only six players attended team practice three days ago at Club 650 in Libis, Quezon City.

National coach Chot Reyes had contemplated asking PBA Commissioner Noli Eala to send in their place one of the league’s clubs to face the Lebanese national team, the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship runner-up.

"Looks like a solid team," said Eala, who called up PBA teams the night before to help save the series. "It is a testament to their commitment to the RP team that the ball clubs came forth and offered their players."

Reyes, however, is unavailable to coach the team, at least for Sunday, owing to a previous commitment by the San Miguel Beermen to play in an invitational pro tournament in Taipei.

SMB management named Reyes the new Beermen head coach a week ago, replacing Jong Uichico, who took over Siot Tanquingcen at Barangay Ginebra.

Norman Black, 1989 PBA Grand Slam coach with San Miguel and the current Ateneo Blue Eagles mentor, will sub for Reyes, who hopes to return by Wednesday in time for the second exhibition game.

Black, national coach during the 1994 Asian Games in Hiroshima, ran RP team practice the last two days.

Playing despite the Israel-Hezbollah conflict tearing up its country, Lebanon beat Canada—without Steve Nash, the National Basketball Association’s Most Valuable Player—last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Soviet republic.

The Lebanese, which will proceed to the World Championship in Saitama, Japan, arrived Friday afternoon from Jordan via Qatar Airways and is billeted at the Crowne Plaza Galleria in Ortigas, Pasig City.

brian
08-14-2006, 12:07 AM
from pba.com

RITUALO SNIPING LEADS SMB-RP BOMBING OF LEBANON
TNT’s chief gunner finishes with 7 treys en route to game-high 23 points
Sunday, 13 August 2006


Ren-Ren Ritualo had 15 of his game-high 23 points in the second period -- all from three-point range -- as the San Miguel Beer-backed Team Philippines bucked a lackluster start to rout Lebanon’s national squad 94-75 Sunday at the Cuneta Astrodome in the first of their two-game goodwill series.

Led by Ritualo’s second quarter explosion, the Filipinos outscored the Lebanese 39-19 in that period, overcoming deficits of as much as 10 in the first 12 minutes of play.

The third-leading local scorer in the past 2005-06 season of the PBA, Ritualo went 5-of-8 from behind arc in a 22-9 run by the SMB-RP Team which turned a 15-24 deficit at the start of the second period into a 37-33 lead which the Filipinos held on to until the final buzzer.

Ritualo went 7-for-16 from rainbow country overall.

“Our players did what they had to do and credit should be given them. They executed well and held their own in rebounding against Lebanon, who also probably didn’t have the legs yet after having arrived just a few days ago,” said coach Norman Black, who handled the Nationals in lieu of national coach Chot Reyes, who is currently in Taipei with the San Miguel Beermen in an Asian Invitational club tournament.

But Reyes, in a text message he sent to his players through SMB-RP Team assistant coach Djalma Arnedo after the game, said he was so proud of the Nationals’ effort.

“There is nothing that makes a coach prouder than to see his team flourish in his absence. It means the players and coaches understand what true teamwork is about. Congrats!” Reyes said in his text message.

Ranidel de Ocampo and Mike Cortez also finished in double figures with their 12 and 10 points, respectively, and were two of five players who had five rebounds to lead SMB-RP in rebounding. De Ocampo had eight of his points also in the second quarter as he and RItualo outscored the entire Lebanese squad in that period by themselves 23-19.

Jimmy Alapag, who also had five boards, quarterbacked the team beautifully with seven assists, more than making up for his finishing only with three points.

SMB-RP, which led by as much as 21 points, shot 37% from three-point range, making 14 of their 38 attempts, compared to just 22% (6 of 27) for the Lebanese. The Filipinos also had 26-19 edge in assists and only had 17 turnovers to Lebanon’s 24.

Lebanon, which is using the two-game series to prepare for its upcoming stint in the World Basketball Championships in Saitama, Japan later this month, was led by the 16 points and 10 rebounds of Brian Feghali.

The Lebanese, who also got strong efforts from big men Roy Samaha (15 points and eight rebounds) and Joseph Vogel (13 points and six rebounds), will have a chance to avenge the defeat when it takes on the Filipinos again this Wednesday at six in the evening at the Araneta Coliseum.

With top player Fadi El Khatib scoring 10 of his 11 points in the first period alone, Lebanon raced to 18-8 and 20-10 leads in the first period before Ritualo woke up sparse crowd with his outside sniping in the second quarter.

The Lebanese qualified for the world championships after finishing a strong second behind China in the Asian Basketball Confederation tourney last year. It is one of four Asian teams competing in the world championships, the other three being China, Qatar and host Japan.

The Philippines failed to compete in that Asian qualifying tournament as a result of its still being suspended by FIBA. (FM)

The scores:

SMB-RP 94 – Ritualo 23, de Ocampo 12, Cortez 10, Allado 9, Miller 9, Pennisi 8, Reavis 6, Taulava 6, Santos 4, Alapag 3, Miranda 2, Williams 2, Mamaril 0.

Lebanon – Feghali 16, Samaha 15, Vogel 13, El Khatib 11, El Turk 7, Mahmoud 5, Fakhreddin 4, Nour 2, Balaa 2, S. Khoury 0.

Quarterscores: 15-24, 54-43, 74-59, 94-75.

gameface_one
08-14-2006, 07:56 AM
Ragtag RP team bombs Lebanon
By Joey Villar
The Philippine Star 08/14/2006

The Philippines proved no gracious host to the visiting Lebanese squad as the hastily formed RP squad fashioned out a 94-75 victory over the World Championship-bound quintet last night at the start of their two-game goodwill series at the Astrodome.

The Lebanese cagers, coming from a country crippled by war, found themselves bombarded by a barrage of triples from the RP cagers formed at the last minute.

Using their quickness and hustle to the hilt, the Filipino cagers leaned on a big second quarter run behind the guns of Ren Ren Ritualo to turn a 10-point deficit into an 11-point lead at the turn before coasting to the victory.

The streak-shooting Ritualo fired 23 points, including seven of the Philippines’ 14 triples that the taller, heftier Lebanese failed to stop. Five of those triples came in the second quarter when the Filipinos erased a 14-24 first quarter deficit to set the tone for the rout.

"They’re very tall and they sure know how to shoot," said Norman Black, who subbed for RP team coach Chot Reyes who was with the San Miguel Beermen in a club tournament in Chinese Taipei.

"We beat them with our quickness," he added.

Brian Bechara Feighali and Roy Samaha led the Lebanese, who will see action in the World Championship set Aug. 19 in Saitama, Japan, with 16 and 15 points while naturalized Joseph Vogel added 13 points.

United States-schooled Fadi Al-Khatib had 11 points, 10 in the opening period when Lebanon led by 10 points. But he was pulled out midway in the second quarter when Ritualo started to find his mark.

The 6’11" Sabah Khouri, who was also schooled in the US like Al-Khatib, did not see action although he was listed in the line-up.

Black, who last coached the national team in the 1994 Hiroshima Asian Games, said Reyes would take over on Wednesday in the last of the two-game RP-Lebanon friendly at the Araneta Coliseum due to commitment with Ateneo in the UAAP.

gameface_one
08-14-2006, 07:57 AM
RP-SMC five surprises Japan-bound Lebanon



By noli cruz
mb.com.ph




THIS WAS hardly an inspiring tune-up match for Lebanon which is preparing for the World Basketball Championship in Japan.


Though rested for a day after arriving from their war-torn country which the team left through a backdoor because of the Israeli blockade, Lebanon hardly showed the poise of a team ready to battle the world’s best basketball teams.

The Lebanese were outgunned and outhustled and fell, 94-75, last night to a Philippine squad that was formed only days earlier.

After a tentative start, the Filipinos whipped up a storm in the second quarter behind the hot hands of Renren Ritualo to erase an eight-point deficit and led 54-43 at halftime before a sparse crowd at the Cuneta Astrodome.

The streak-shooting guard of the Talk ‘N Text Phone Pals unloaded five three-pointers to highlight a 39-point effort by Team Pilipinas in the period.

Ritualo finished with 23 points on 7-for-16 shooting from the three-point region.

Ranidel de Ocampo added eight points in the second, including a triple and a three-point play, as the team backed by San Miguel Beer outscored Lebanon, 39-19.

The scoring rampage didn’t stop in the second half as Mick Pennisi, Willie Miller, Jimmy Alapag and even Don Allado drained at least one from beyond the arc.

Pennisi’s trey late in the game gave the Filipinos a 92-72 lead heading into the final minute of the game. Kelly Williams, a potential top pick in the coming PBA Draft, scored his only basket on an alley-hoop dunk off a feed from Alapag, giving the locals their biggest lead, 94-73.

"The guys came to play tonight," said winning coach Norman Black, pinch-hitting for Chot Reyes. "I know we can play with these guys (Lebanese) as long as we hit our outside shots and get our share of rebounds."

The Lebanese, who arrived Friday, led by as many as 10 points in the early going, 18-8, as Fadi El-Khatib scored the bulk of his 11 points in the opening period.

El-Khatib, however, sat out the entire second half.

Brian Feghali led Lebanon with 16 points and 10 rebounds while Roy Samaha added 15 and eight rebounds.

The Lebanese team is in the final stop of a warm-up series for the World Basketball Championship which begins next week in Saitama, Japan.

Lebanon plays the RP team again tomorrow at the Araneta Coliseum for the conclusion of their two-game series.

Regular RP Team coach Chot Reyes is expected to be on hand to handle the team.

The scores:

SMC-PILIPINAS 94 — Ritualo 23, De Ocampo 12, Cortez 10, Miller 9, Allado 9, Pennisi 8, Reavis 6, Taulava 6,Santos 4, Alapag 3, Miranda 2, Miller 2, Williams 2, Mamaril 0.

LEBANON 75 — Feghali 16, Samaha 15, Vogel 13, El Khatib 11, El Turk 7, Mahmoud 5, Fahk Raddin 4, Nour 2, Balaa 2, Fahd 0.

Quarters: 15-24; 54-43; 74-59; 94-75.

gameface_one
08-14-2006, 07:57 AM
World caging-bound Lebanon falls to RP 5


By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 03:44am (Mla time) 08/14/2006

Published on page A35 of the August 14, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

GAME WEDNESDAY (Araneta Coliseum)
6 p.m. -- San Miguel-RP Team vs Lebanon

IT WAS A war zone at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City and the Philippines hit most of its targets.

Renren Ritualo sizzled from beyond the arc in the second quarter as San Miguel-RP Team pummeled Lebanon, 94-75, last night at the start of the visitors’ two-game goodwill series.

The Filipinos were hastily formed just last week while the Lebanese were on their way to the world championship in Saitama, Japan, starting on Aug. 19 after finishing as No. 2 behind China in the last FIBA Asia championship.

Ritualo fired 23 points after going seven of 16 from three-point range.

Asi Taulava and Rafi Reavis held their ground against the taller and heftier Lebanese.

“We tried to run and quicken the pace a little bit,” said coach Norman Black, who subbed for national mentor Vincent “Chot” Reyes who will return from Taipei in time for Wednesday’s game. “I just implemented Chot’s system.”

Fadi El Khatib, MVP of the ABC Championship held at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City last year, was benched in the second half after scoring 10 points in the first quarter.

The scores:
SAN MIGUEL-RP TEAM 94 -- Ritualo 23, De Ocampo 12, Cortez 10, Miller 9, Allado 9, Pennisi 8, Reavis 6, Taulava 6, Santos 4, Williams 2, Miranda 2, Mamaril 0.
LEBANON 75 -- Feghali 16, Samaha 15, Vogel 13, El Khatib 11, El Turk 7, Mahmoud 5, Fakhreddine 4, Nour 2, Balaa 2, Fahd 0.
Quarters: 15-24, 54-43, 74-59, 94-75

bigfreeze_bibby
08-14-2006, 03:27 PM
Question, was the game televised? Parang wala akong nakita kagabi eh.

Kid Cubao
08-14-2006, 04:07 PM
pareho pala nating inaabangan ito, hehehe! i thought abc-5 would broadcast it last night.

pio_valenz
08-14-2006, 05:27 PM
Hindi kasi yata sigurado kung matutuloy given the ongoing Middle East crisis, kaya hindi naka-organize ng TV coverage in time.

gameface_one
08-15-2006, 08:51 AM
RP cagers eye sweep against tall Lebanese



Inquirer
Last updated 05:23am (Mla time) 08/15/2006

Published on page A22 of the August 15, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

INSPIRED by its 19-point blowout win the first time around, the San Miguel Beer-sponsored Team Philippines attempts to sweep its two-game exhibition series against the Lebanon national team tomorrow.

Sunday’s embarrassing defeat was definitely a downer for the Lebanese, Asia’s second-best cagers who are here to cap their preparation for the World Basketball Championship slated in Saitama, Japan, later this month.

And it should hurt them all the more knowing that they were beaten by a team that was hastily assembled for the goodwill games.

“There is nothing that makes a coach prouder than to learn that his team flourished in his absence,” said head coach Chot Reyes in a text message to assistant coach Djalma Arnedo. “It means the players and coaches understand what true teamwork is about. Congrats!”

Reyes is still in Taipei calling the shots for the San Miguel Beermen, who are seeing action in the Asian Invitational Club Championship.

Filipinos executed well

But while he was proud of what Team Philippines has accomplished, coach Norman Black -- who is pinch-hitting for Reyes -- put everything in perspective, saying the visiting Lebanese are still trying to feel their way around.

“Our players did what they had to do,” said Black. “They executed well and held their own off the boards against the tall Lebanese.”

But he was also quick to admit that the visitors might not have the legs since they came in just the day before from their war-torn country.

Lebanon beat Canada, without NBA star Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic.

“But with another two-day rest, I’m sure the Lebanese will recover their energy and give us a good challenge on Wednesday,” Black said.

Game time is set at 7 p.m. at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Ren-Ren Ritualo, who scorched the visitors with 23 points, including 7-for-16 from behind the arc, is again expected to spark the RP Team’s offense.

The Filipinos had a tentative start but found their rhythm in the second quarter with Ritualo sparking them ahead for good, 54-43, at the half.

gameface_one
08-15-2006, 08:51 AM
RP braces for tougher Lebanese in Game 2

The Philippine Star 08/15/2006

Team Philippines tries to sweep its two-game exhibition series with Lebanon tomorrow although the hosts expect a different kind of rivals to show up in the 7 p.m. encounter at the San Juan gym.

The San Miguel Beer-sponsored RP team ran the taller Lebanese side to the ground with a 94-75 rout at the Astrodome Sunday in a game that hardly showed the talent and flair of a team competing in this week’s World Basketball Championship in Saitama, Japan.

Coach Norman Black, who took over for Chot Reyes, put everything in perspective, saying the visiting Lebanese are still trying to feel their way around.

"Our players did what they had to do. They executed well and held their own off the boards against the tall Lebanese," said Black.

But he was also quick to admit that the Lebanese cagers might not have the legs since they came in just the day before all the way from their war-torn country.

Lebanon beat Canada, without Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic.

"But with another two-day rest, I’m sure the Lebanese will recover their energy and give us a good challenge on Wednesday," Black said.

Ren-Ren Ritualo, who scorched the visitors with 23 points including 7-for-16 from behind the arc, is again expected to spark RP team’s offense.

The Filipino had a tentative start but found their rhythm in the second quarter with Ritualo sparking the Team Philippines’ charge that saw the Filipinos’ erase an eight point deficit and storm ahead to 54-43 at halftime.

That embarrassing defeat was definitely not an inspiring tune-up match for the Lebanese, who are here to wind up its buildup for the world championship

And it should hurt them all the more knowing that they were beaten by a team that was hastily assembled for the goodwill games.

"There is nothing that makes a coach prouder than to learn that his team flourished in his absence. It means the players and coaches understand what true teamwork is about. Congrats!" said Reyes in a text message to assistant coach Djalma Arnedo.

Reyes is currently in Taipei calling the shots for the San Miguel Beermen, who, incidentally, dropped their first two games in the Asian Professional Basketball (APB) tournament in Taiwan.

gameface_one
08-15-2006, 08:52 AM
SMC-RP five eyes sweep
abs-cbnnews.com


Inspired by its 19-point blowout victory, the San Miguel Beer-sponsored Team Philippines attempt to sweep its two-game exhibition series against the Lebanese team when it battles the visitors Wednesday.

Sunday’s 94-75 defeat was definitely not an inspiring tune-up match for the Lebanese, who are here to wind up its preparation for the World Basketball Championship that will be held in Saitama, Japan.

And it should hurt them all the more knowing that they were beaten by a team that was hastily assembled for the goodwill games.

"There is nothing that makes a coach prouder than to learn that his team flourished in his absence. It means the players and coaches understand what true teamwork is about. Congrats!" said head coach Chot Reyes in a text message to assistant coach Djalma Arnedo.

Reyes is currently in Taipei calling the shots for the San Miguel Beermen, who are competing in the Asian Invitational Club Championship.

But while he was proud of what the Team Philippines has accomplished, coach Norman Black, who is pinch-hitting for Reyes, put everything in perspective saying the visiting Lebanese are still trying to feel their way

Black was also quick to admit that the visitors might not have the legs since they came in just the day before all the way from their war-torn country.

Lebanon beat Canada, which played without ace guard Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic.

"But with another two-day rest, I’m sure the Lebanese will recover their energy and give us a good challenge on Wednesday," Black said.

Renren Ritualo, who scorched the visitors with 23 points, including 7-for-16 from behind the arc, is again expected to spark RP Team’s offense.

gameface_one
08-15-2006, 08:53 AM
RP expects a tougher Lebanon in Game 2
mb.com.ph





INSPIRED BY its 19-point blowout victory, the San Miguel Beer sponsored Team Philippines tries to sweep its two-game exhibition series against the Lebanon national team when it battles the visitors tomorrow at the San Juan Gym.


Sunday’s defeat to a hastily-formed RP squad was definitely not an inspiring tune-up match for the Lebanese, who are here to fine-tune for the World Basketball Championship that will be held in Saitama, Japan next week.

"There is nothing that makes a coach prouder than to learn that his team flourish in his absence. It means the players and coaches understand what true teamwork is about," said head coach Chot Reyes in a text message to assistant coach Djalma Arnedo.

Reyes is currently in Taipei calling the shots for the San Miguel Beermen, who are competing in the Asian Invitational Club Championship.

But while he was proud of what the Team Philippines has accomplished, coach Norman Black, who is pinch-hitting for Reyes, put everything in perspective saying the visiting Lebanese are still trying to feel their way around.

"Our players did what they had to do. They executed well and held their own off the boards against the tall Lebanese," observed Black.

But he was also quick to admit that the visitors might not have the legs since they came in just the day before all the way from their war-torn country.

Lebanon beat Canada, without Steve Nash, last week, just a day after falling to Slovenia, a former Russian republic.

"But with another two-day rest, I’m sure the Lebanese will recover their energy and give us a good challenge on Wednesday," Black said.

Ren-Ren Ritualo, who scorched the visitors with 23 points including 7-for-16 from behind the arc, is again expected to spark RP Team’s offense.

The Filipino had a tentative start but found their rhythm in the second quarter with Ritualo sparking the Team Philippines’ charge that saw the Filipinos’ erasing an eight point deficit to post a 54-43 lead at halftime.

gameface_one
08-16-2006, 07:57 AM
Team RP eyes sweep vs rested Lebanese 5

The Philippine Star 08/16/2006

The San Miguel-RP team will be out to prove that its rout of Lebanon Sunday is no fluke as the two teams clash in the second of their two-game exhibition series at the San Juan Gym today.

The Nationals are looking forward to sustain their effort Sunday although they expect a big comeback and sharp form form the World Championship-bound Lebanese coming off a two-day rest.

Game time is at 7 p.m. with tickets prized affordably. The general admission area is open to the public for free.

Renren Ritualo fired seven triples and a total of 23 points while Ranidel de Ocampo and Mike Cortez added 12 and 11, respectively, as the Nationals fashioned out an emphatic 94-75 win over the Lebanese.

Curiously, the Lebanese, runners-up behind the Chinese in the last two Fiba-Asia championships, whipped Germany and Canada before coming here. But the Germans were without Dirk Nowitzki and the Canadians minus Steve Nash.

Coach Norman Black, who called the shots for the RP team in the first game, said the Lebanese might not have the legs Sunday since they came in just the day before the game. They had to endure a travel made longer by an incident in their flight to Manila from Jordan.

An allegedly deranged passenger attempted to harm one of the Lebanese players but was wrestled down and overcame by the other players. The plane was on a transit flight to Qatar but returned to Jordan where the troublemaker was unloaded and taken into custody, delaying the flight’s arrival in Manila by some five hours.

The incident might also have something to do with the Lebanese poor game Sunday.

The good news back home, however, may well inspire the Lebanese to come out strong tonight.

"We are very happy over that development (ceasefire in the Israel-Lebanon war) and we hope the peace continues in our country," said Lebanese team captain Fahdi El Khatib.

Paul Coughter, their American head coach, feels for his players and the families they left behind in Lebanon.

"I’m just so relieved," he said. "We’re all praying the situation improves."

Coughter said the long trip from Jordan to the Philippines (via Qatar) and the five-hour time difference had kept the team sleepless since they arrived.

"The day of the game last Sunday, we were up until six in the morning. Then we practiced," Coughter said, who has lost his voice due to the changed climate and the non-stop rain. "We’re all just out of sync. Hope we play better this time."

Coach Norman Black, the 1989 PBA Grand Slam coach and 1994 RP-Asian Games mentor, will step aside to give way for head coach Chot Reyes who’s back briefly back from Taiwan where San Miguel Beer is competing in an Asian pro tourney.

"Our players did what they had to do. They executed well and held their own off the boards against the taller Lebanese," said Black after Sunday’s game. "But the two-day rest should give them (Lebanese) enough time to recover and they could give us a good challenge the next time around."

gameface_one
08-16-2006, 07:57 AM
Lebanon coach praises RP basketball



By Noli Cruz
mb.com.ph



COACH PAUL Coughter, the American coach of World Championship-bound Lebanon, thinks the Philippines needs only to take care of two things to regain basketball supremacy in Asia.



First, the country must settle issues with FIBA; and second, it must send its best players in regional competitions.

As simple as that.

He even frowned when asked if the Philippines can ever rule a regional basketball competition again as if the answer’s obvious.

"Of course," quickly he said. "You’ve got terrific basketball talents here." That’s why it doesn’t bother him at all even when the Filipinos routed the Lebanese, 94-75, Sunday night.

"I’ve been in this country before and I know the caliber of the players," he said. "I’m impressed with all of the guys we played against."

But he rarely sees them play in regional meets.

"The problem is, you’ve been sending teams that are jokes in international competitions," Coughter said. "I remember in one tournament my junior team beat your team by 45 points."

Obviously, that wasn’t the right formula. Coughter said even the best team needs to compete at a high level for a longer period of time to be really successful.

The classic example is no less than the US Dream Team itself. The most talented team in the world placed sixth in the world championship four years ago and was relegated to third in the 2004 Olympics.

"Let’s put it this way. Your team beat us by 19 points," Coughter said. "But who’s going to the world championship?"

What he’s trying to say is that the Philippines should stop fooling around in international competitions to make a serious run for the money.

Coughter, named Coach of the Year in Asia last season by FIBA, always like the Filipino brand of basketball. In fact, he loves to coach in the Philippines.

"It’s entertaining," he said, referring to the Filipinos’ style of play. "I’ll be thrilled to work here."

He has had communications with Rene Pardo of Purefoods Chunkee and Lito Alvarez of Air21 before, but there hasn’t been an offer.

gameface_one
08-16-2006, 07:59 AM
Lebanon eyes redemption



By Tito Ttalao
mb.com.ph



THE GUNS have fallen silent in their country. But for the Lebanese national team, the “war” with Team Philippines has just begun.



After weeks of death and destruction in southern Lebanon and adjacent parts of Israel, a United Nations resolution put an end to a shower of bombs and rockets raining down on either side.

The tenuous ceasefire is welcome news everywhere, especially to a group of basketball players who traveled half the globe to see action in the FIBA World Championship in Saitama, Japan next week.

But first, with the skirmish back home seemingly settled, the Lebanese hope to settle the score in their "conflict" with the San Miguel-sponsored Filipino squad, especially after getting overwhelmed by 19 points in the first of their two scheduled clashes last Sunday.

They collide again at 7 tonight at the new San Juan Arena, with the Lebanese determined to bring down the host team, notably its main gunner Renren Ritualo whose over-the-border shooting destroyed Lebanon starting in the second quarter.

Ritualo went 6-for-17 from three-point range on the way to 23 points.

The news from home was overwhelming, however.

"We are very happy over that development and we hope the peace continues in our country," said Lebanese team captain Fahdi El Khatib.

Paul Coughter, their American head coach, feel for his players and the families they left behind in Lebanon.

"I’m just so relieved," he said. "We’re all praying the situation improves."

Coughter said the long trip from Jordan to the Philippines (via Qatar) and the five-hour time difference had kept the team sleepless since they arrived.

"The day of the game last Sunday, we were up until six in the morning. Then we practiced," Coughter said, who has lost his voice due to the changed climate and the non-stop rain. "We’re all just out of sync. Hope we play better this time."

Norman Black, the 1989 PBA Grand Slam coach and 1994 RP-Asian Games mentor, will step aside to give way for head coach Chot Reyes,

Black, an assistant to Reyes at SMC-Pilipinas, showed the coaching touch that has steered the Ateneo Blue Eagles to a first round sweep in the current UAAP tournament, plugging defensive halls and setting ablaze the Nationals’ offense.

"Our players did what they had to do," said Black after the game. "They executed well and held their own off the boards against the taller Lebanese.

"But the two-day rest should give them (Lebanese) enough time to recover and they could give us a good challenge the next time around."

Black will still be on the bench, but Reyes, back briefly from coaching the San Miguel Beermen in an invitational pro tournament in Taipei, will be calling the shots.

The RP-Lebanon series is the final tune-up for SMC-RP before it leaves for the Brunei Cup on Aug. 19 to defend its title.

Tickets are prized affordably, with the general admission area open to the public for free.

gameface_one
08-17-2006, 09:04 AM
SMB-Pilipinas makes it two over Lebanon
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/17/2006

San Miguel-Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes said they deserve to play in the coming Asian Games in Doha, Qatar after making it two in a row over second-ranked Asian team Lebanon.

The Nationals ran the breaks very well and shot steadily from afar on set-up offense to whip the Lebanese, 105-100, for the second straight time before a sparse crowd at the San Juan Gym last night.

Renren Ritualo made five three-pointers while Mick Pennisi, Jimmy Alapag, Willie Miller, Kelly Williams and Ranidel de Ocampo combined for nine triples as the Nationals duplicated their 19-point blowout of the Lebanese Wednesday at the Astrodome.

"Masaya ako na nanghihinayang. We’ve beaten Asian No. 3 team Qatar then we swept the No. 2 team Lebanon but we’re not playing in Saitama," said Reyes.

The Nationals leave Monday for Brunei to compete in the 2006 Sultan Cup then the RP team program will be put on hold until after the FIBA Congress during the World Championship in Saitama, Japan.

"We have three prayers. One is for our sports leaders to get united, second the FIBA gets enlightened and decides to lift our suspension and third we be allowed to play again," said Reyes.

"Everybody’s saying we deserve to play in the Asian Games. We’re as ready as we can be. I’m sure the players want to play," Reyes added.

"We’re ready as long as I have the right team. Here, I had the team I wanted," said Reyes in breaking his 10-game losing skid in international plays.

The Nationals repeated their 94-75 rout of the Lebanese Wednesday, overcoming a slow start and a 33-point explosion of Lebanese star all-round player Fadi El Khatib.

Pennisi banged the last of his three three-pointers with time down to 1:03 then, after a missed three-point attempt by Brian Bechara, Jimmy Alapag made a charity as San Miguel-Pilipinas all but wrapped up the win at 102-98.

The Nationals took a 46-44 edge at halftime but not after falling behind by 14 points early on.

A triple and a fastbreak layup by Miller had the host team surging ahead for the first time at 38-37 with 2:20 to go in the opening half.

"There’s no difference in the game plan we had Wednesday. Ang nagbago lang mindset. I told the boys we can’t win this game bringing the same intensity Sunday. The Lebanese will surely come out strong off a two-day break," said Reyes.

gameface_one
08-18-2006, 07:50 AM
Victory over Lebanon has Chot praying


By JOEL ORELLANA, The Manila Times Reporter
abs-cbnnews.com


Sweeping the World Championships-bound Lebanon national team in a two-game goodwill series has given Philippine team mentor Chot Reyes mixed feelings.

"Masarap na puno nang panghihinayang (It’s a great feeling mixed with regret)," said Reyes, minutes after the Filipino cagers pulled off an impressive 105-100 victory over the Lebanese Wednesday night at San Juan gym.

The victory was a fitting follow-up to the Philippine Basketball Association-backed team’s 94-75 shellacking of the visitors last Sunday at the Astrodome.

"We beat the No. 3 qualifier [Qatar] in the Jones Cup then we beat the No. 2 [Lebanon] twice. They are going to the Worlds, we’re not," Reyes added.

Qatar and Lebanon will compete in the world championships in Saitama, Japan, starting Saturday, and will play against the best of the world.

The Philippines, meanwhile, has been suspended by the FIBA, but Reyes said there has been strong clamor in the Asian region for the world governing body of basketball to lift the suspension.

"Wherever we go, people are telling us that the Philippine has got to play in the Asian tournaments. We want to play in Doha [for the Asian Games] but still depends on the decision of the [PBA] board," Reyes said.

The stylish mentor offered three prayers for the sake of Philippine basketball: one, for the basketball officials to unite; two, for the FIBA to be enlightened and lift the suspension; and three; for FIBA to allow the country to compete again in international tournaments.

"We’re ready, as long as I have the right team. Here, I had the team that I wanted. And they deserve to play," Reyes stressed.

He added that Filipinos beat the Lebanese minus some of the RP pool’s top caliber members, like Jayjay Helterbrand, Dondon Hontiveros and Danny Seigle.

The Nationals will now prepare for the coming Sultan’s Cup in Brunei, where Reyes’ wards are the defending champions.

"After that, we will put the program on hold and see what will be the decision of the FIBA to our case," said Reyes.

The FIBA council will convene in Japan later this month, and the Philippine appeal to lift the suspension is on the agenda.

gameface_one
08-19-2006, 09:26 AM
SMC-RP opens Brunei defense
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/19/2006

San Miguel-Pilipinas opens defense of its crown in the 2006 Brunei Sultan Cup versus Saudi Arabia today in high spirits following its recent two-game sweep of second-ranked Asian squad Lebanon at home.

Coach Chot Reyes has tapped San Miguel’s Danny Seigle, Dondon Hontiveros and Dorian Peña, and Air21’s Mark Telan and Niño Canaleta to replace Jimmy Alapag, Mick Pennisi, Denok Miranda, Kelly Williams and Arwind Santos for the Brunei joust.

Seigle, Hontiveros and Peña are fresh from their stint with San Miguel Beer in the Asian Pro League in Taiwan as they banner the Nationals in their 9 p.m. tiff with the Saudis.

Assistant coach Aboy Castro calls the shots for the San Miguel-Pilipinas with Reyes flying to Brunei only on Monday.

Completing the roster are RP-Lebanon series holdovers Ranidel de Ocampo, Mike Cortez, Willie Miller, Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava.

The Nationals face South Korea at 3 p.m. tomorrow, the Darwin All-Stars of Australia at 7 p.m. Monday, Barangay Ginebra at 9 p.m. Tuesday and Jordan at 7 p.m. Friday.

Aug. 26 is reserved for the crossover semifinals with the championship set the following day.

Barangay Ginebra starts its own campaign in the tourney Monday since the Kings need to attend the PBA Rookie Draft at Market! Market! in Taguig tomorrow.

The Kings are fielding in Eric Menk, Mark Caguioa, Rommel Adducul, Andy Seigle, Billy Mamaril, Rafi Reavis, Sunday Salvacion, Mark Macapagal, veteran free agents Allan Salangsang and Egay Echavez and rookie free agent Christian Coronel from San Sebastian.

The Nationals beat the Alaska Milk Aces in the Brunei Sultan Cup finals last year.

The Nationals departed Manila at 4 p.m. yesterday via Royal Brunei.

San Miguel Corp. basketball operations chief Robert Non follows the team Wednesday, while PBA commissioner Noli Eala, media bureau chief Willie Marcial and San Miguel board representative Ely Capacio fly in the following day.

gameface_one
08-19-2006, 09:30 AM
RP-SMB vs Saudi today
mb.com.ph





A NEWLY-OVERHAULED San Miguel-Pilipinas squad opens its title-retention drive today in the Brunei Cup when it battles Saudi Arabia at the National Indoor Stadium in Brunei.


With the exit of Jimmy Alapag, Mick Pennisi, Dennis Miranda and rookies Arwind Santos and Kelly Williams, the Nationals will be reinforced by Mark Clemence Telan, Niño Cañaleta, Dorian Peña, Dondon Hontiveros and Danny Seigle.

The change in key personnel marked a major transition for the team which goes to battle at 9 p.m.

Telan, a 6-6 veteran shooting forward, and Cañaleta, the PBA’s slamdunk champion, are both from the Air21 Express. Peña, Hontiveros and Seigle are from San Miguel.

The quintet joined the remnants of the RP-Lebanon series — Ranidel de Ocampo, also from the Express, Mike Cortez and Willie Miller of the Alaska Aces, and Don Allado, Renren Ritualo and Asi Taulava of the Talk ‘N Text Phone Pals.

To be handled by assistant coach Aboy Castro in the absence of national mentor Chot Reyes, who will follow from the PBA Draft tomorrow, the Nationals face South Korea on Aug. 20 ( 3 p.m.), the Darwin All-Stars of Australia on Aug, 21 (7 p.m.), Barangay Ginebra on Aug. 23 ( 9 p.m.), and Jordan on Aug. 25 (7 p.m.).

August 26 is reserved for the crossover semifinals, with the championship set on Aug. 27. Aug. 22 and 24 are rest days.

Last year, the RP team beat the Alaska Aces in the final game to complete a sweep of the competition.

A brief opening ceremony precedes the games on Aug. 20.

The Nationals departed Manila at 4 p.m. yesterday via Royal Brunei. Robert Non, San Miguel Corporations basketball manager, will join the team on Aug. 23, while PBA Commissioner Noli Eala, Media Bureau Chief Willie Marcial and San Miguel Board Representative Ely Capacio fly in the following day

gameface_one
08-22-2006, 07:47 AM
Nationals rip Koreans for 2nd win in Brunei



Inquirer
Last updated 04:03am (Mla time) 08/22/2006

Published on page A22 of the August 22, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN -- Ren-Ren Ritualdo and Dondon Hontiveros came up big when it mattered, leading the San Miguel-RP Team to a 101-93 victory over the SK Knights of Korea in the 6th Shell Rimula Brunei Cup.

It was the second straight win for the defending champions and it was fashioned out with a lot more conviction compared to a 79-72 win over the Saudi Arabian All Stars in the opener.

San Miguel next clashes with the Darwin All Stars, who conquered the Saudi Arabian All Stars with ease, 81-65, for the solo lead.

Ritualo scored 14 of his total in the second period and Hontiveros had nine in the fourth to lead the Filipinos past the scrappy Koreans in the very physical contest at the National Indoor Stadium here.

The Knights were overly aggressive in the onset, with Jung Rak Young, Kebu Omar Stewart and Lim Jae Hyun shooting all but two of SK’s 25 first quarter points.

Ranidel de Ocampo and Don Carlos Allado were the reasons why the Koreans didn’t pull away in that torrid stretch after they combined for 15 points to keep the Filipinos within striking distance.

Ritualo hit his mark and the Filipinos closed out the half with a 52-45 lead.

The Koreans tied the game for the last time at 64 before Hontiveros went on a scoring rampage in the final two minutes of the period to restore a 74-67 lead for the Philippines entering the fourth quarter.

The loss put a huge dent in the Koreans’ title aspirations. They next clash with another RP squad, the Barangay Ginebra Kings, Tuesday night.

full battle gear
08-23-2006, 09:15 AM
Nationals pummel Australian all-stars

Inquirer
Last updated 03:26am (Mla time) 08/23/2006

Published on page A21 of the August 23, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN -- Asi Taulava patrolled the lanes with authority as the San Miguel-RP Team cruised past the Darwin All-Stars, 99-84, in the 6th Shell Rimula Brunei Cup yesterday at the National Indoor Stadium here.

Focusing too much on the 6-foot-9 Taulava, the Darwin All-Stars took Dondon Hontiveros and Renren Ritualo for granted and the pair responded by relentlessly puncturing the hoops from afar to help the country score its third straight win.

Unstoppable in the paint, Taulava drew most of the attention as the defense collapsed on him, leaving snipers Hontiveros and Ritualo to go on a shooting spree.

RP coach Chot Reyes, however, attributed the win to the team’s dominance in the shaded area and rapid ball movement.

“We just wanted to control the paint,” said Reyes. “But if we want to win this tournament, it has to be through defense and ball movement.”

The defending champion in the six-team tournament, the unbeaten San Miguel-RP Team dictated the tempo with an 8-0 opening blast. And with Taulava pulling down rebounds with ease, Team Pilipinas zoomed to a 21-9 cushion by the end of the first period.

The Australians narrowed the gap midway in the second quarter following an eight-point run and came to within 41-37 at halftime, but that was the closest they could get.

By the end of the third period, the Philippines was already in cruise control, padding the lead to 69-57 and forcing the Australians to just give up. Darwin’s key players were already resting on the bench at that point.

“We we’re constantly changing our defensive tactics to keep the other team off-balanced,” said Reyes, whose deputy, Aboy Castro, held the fort for the Filipinos during the first two games.

With Castro calling the shots, Team Pilipinas trounced the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia All-Stars and the South Korean-based SK Knights.

In the other match, Barangay Ginebra made a smashing debut by whipping the Jordan All-Stars, 82-70.

full battle gear
08-23-2006, 11:29 AM
Three in row for RP cagers
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 08/23/2006

Like a runaway express train, the San Miguel Beer-Philippine basketball team rolled to its third straight win, beating the Darwin Airport Resort All-Stars of Australia, 99-84, in the sixth Shell Rimula Brunei Cup at the National Indoor Stadium in Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital city of Brunei Darussalam, last Monday.

It didn’t matter that Darwin showed up with 14-year National Basketball Association (NBA) veteran Sedale Threatt leading the squad. The Philippines broke out to an 8-0 lead, withstood a scorching Darwin rally that cut a 12-point gap to four, 41-37, at the half and rode on RenRen Ritualo’s hot hand to remain unbeaten in the six-team tournament.

Threatt, a 6-2 sharpshooter who played for five NBA teams, was designated by Darwin coach Don Sheppard to shadow Ritualo but couldn’t stop the Talk ‘N’ Text gunner. Ritualo knocked down three treys in the third period to lift the Philippines to a 69-57 lead that broke the Aussies’ back.

Coach Chot Reyes missed the Philippines’ first two games to attend the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) draft in Taguig last Sunday and came in time for the Darwin game. Assistant coach Aboy Castro piloted the team to a 79-72 win over the Saudi Arabia All-Stars last Saturday and a 101-93 decision over the South Korea Knights the next day.

"I came in and allowed coach Aboy to do most of the coaching as they’ve been doing a great job in my absence but the one thing that was important for me was that we continue to get better as the tournament progresses," said Reyes.

"Secondly, we want to continue improving our teamwork as we have three guys (Mark Telan, Olsen Racela, Wesley Gonzales) who joined us without any practice as late-second replacements for Mick (Pennisi), Mike (Cortez) and Willie (Miller). We were worried about our energy level as we played our third straight game while Darwin was fresh from a day-off but I think our bench depth took care of that.

"What impressed me most was the selflessness of our team. The players are genuinely looking for each other, moving the ball well and sharing the ball. We have a saying on this team – it doesn’t matter how many minutes you play, what matters is how many minutes you contribute. These guys are taking this to heart."

Reyes said ball movement and defense are keys to winning the tournament. "We were constantly changing our defensive tactics to keep Darwin off balance," he pointed out.

Racela started the game with Denok Miranda nursing a slight groin strain and orchestrated the Philippines’ jackrabbit start. In the final period, Ranidel de Ocampo and Asi Taulava attacked the basket from up close as Darwin extended its defense to stop Ritualo, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros in the perimeter. The Philippines’ inside-outside offense threw off the Aussies who just keeled over from the onslaught. Telan’s buzzer-beating triple closed out the scoring.

In the other game last Monday, Ginebra San Miguel stormed back from a 15-point deficit and ignited a 28-7 bomb in the fourth period to trounce the Jordan national team, 82-70. It was the Kings’ first game in the tournament and coach Joseph Uichico’s debut on the Ginebra bench.

full battle gear
08-27-2006, 08:55 AM
RP 5 unlikely to play in Doha
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 08/27/2006

Even if the Federation Internationale de Basketball (FIBA) lifts the country’s suspension at the two-day World Congress starting tomorrow in Japan, it’s unlikely the Philippines will send a team to the Asian Games in Doha late this year.

A highly placed source said the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) is inclined not to lend players to the national team for the Asian Games because of the limited preparation period and the schedule conflicts with the season calendar.

The source added the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) has indicated it will not accredit a team other than a PBA selection.

"The PBA may not agree to sending players to the Asian Games because of the short period of preparation," said the source. "At the same time, the POC will not accredit a team that is mediocre or haphazardly formed. Besides, the PBA has committed to send players only to the Asian qualifying tournaments for the World Championships and the Olympics, not the Asian Games."

Only public clamor will change the PBA’s direction, noted the source.

Since 1990, the PBA has formed the national team strictly for the Asian Games. Robert Jaworski coached an all-pro squad to the silver medal at the 1990 Beijing Asiad. Norman Black was the coach at the 1994 Hiroshima Games, Tim Cone at the 1998 Bangkok Games and Joseph Uichico at the 2002 Busan Games. Cone managed a bronze in Bangkok while Black and Uichico settled for fourth place.

Last year, the PBA decided to withdraw support for the Asian Games and instead, send players to the FIBA-Asia qualifying tournaments for the World Championships and the Olympics. The long-term goal was to bring the Philippine basketball team back to the Olympics in Beijing in 2008.

The Philippines has not played basketball in the Olympics since the 1972 Munich Games and in the World Championships since Manila hosted in 1978.

The road to Beijing will mean the Philippines qualifying to play in the FIBA-Asia Continental Championships next year via the SEABA (Southeast Asian Basketball Association) tournament and claiming an Olympic slot by finishing first or second, if China tops the regional competition. China has an automatic berth in the Olympic 12-team cast as host nation.

Another road to Beijing is open to 12 non-regional qualifiers, including two from Asia, by invitation to a "bonus" qualifying tournament where the three top finishers earn slots to the Olympics.

The "bonus" tournament will be played on July 7-13, 2008 and has been approved by the International Olympic Committee.

With only 12 teams playing in Beijing, outright qualifiers are host China, the 2006 World Championships gold medalist, the regional champions from Africa, Asia and Oceania and the top two placers from the Americas and Europe. The remaining slots will be for the top three finishers in the "bonus" qualifying tournament.

Since China has been guaranteed a ticket as host country and assuming it wins the FIBA-Asia Continental Championships next year, the second Asian placer advances to the Olympics. That means Asia is assured of at least two slots in the Beijing Olympics. One or two more slots will be allotted to Asia depending on how the two invited Asian teams fare in the "bonus" qualifying tournament.

To prepare for the Olympics, a source said national coach Chot Reyes will designate a pool of 15 players to form the national team in January.

"The idea of naming the national players early is to give focus to the training and to spare the mother clubs of not knowing if their players are going to be pulled out for whatever reason," said the source. "It’s also to give recognition to the players who are ready to commit themselves for the country."

gameface_one
08-28-2006, 09:43 AM
RP cagers win over Darwin, retain Brunei Cup crown

The Philippine Star 08/28/2006

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN — Danny Seigle exploded for 25 points as San Miguel-RP Team clobbered Darwin Airport Resort All-Stars of Australia, 96-65, last night to retain the Shell Rimula Brunei Cup crown at the National Indoor Stadium here.

Seigle proved unstoppable as he led the PBA All-Stars to the convincing victory over surprise finalist the Darwin All-Stars. His performance in the tournament also earned him the MVP award.

The rest of the SMB-RP squad also played cohesively as a team and the scores were distributed evenly among the PBA players.

Earlier, the SMB-RP Team took a lot of beating but it was Saudi Arabia which left the coliseum hurting as the Filipinos romped away with a 79-48 rout of the Saudis to advance to the championship round.

The Australians, seeded third in the crossover semifinals, stunned the SK Knights, 90-83, in the other game.

Roughed up nearly all game, Dondon Hontiveros had welts, Dennis Miranda, Olsen Racela and Niño Canaleta sustained bruises while Asi Taulava, Mark Telan, Dorian Peña and Danny Seigle got bumped, hacked and smacked.

But the Filipinos survived the ordeal, using a big scoring run in the early going behind Taulava’s dominating presence in the paint and Renren Ritualo and Seigle sniping to set the tone for the rout.

"The other team wasn’t even concerned about playing basketball. They just want to throw their bodies at us and play it rough," said San Miguel-RP Team coach Chot Reyes after the Filipinos arranged a title showdown with the Darwin All-Stars.

"They got pissed off because they couldn’t score," said Reyes. "There was even a time in the third quarter that we’re getting drawn into that situation."

The Filipinos raced to a 23-9 advantage with Taulava lording it over in the lane, Ritualo and Seigle draining their three-pointers and Peña forming a fierce frontline threat with Taulava.

Telan then came up with eight points in another 16-1 binge while Seigle and Wesley Gonzales also joined in burying the Saudis as the defending champions sat on a 46-28 cushion at the half.

Officiating suddenly tilted in favor of the Saudis at resumption of the contest as the referees slapped a total of nine personal fouls on the Filipinos that sent the KSA All-Stars to the free-throw line majority of the way.

Without a single field goal, the Saudis converted 10 of their 14 free throws in the period and the game started to turn ugly in every possession.

Despite the rugged game put up by their rivals, the Filipinos kept their cool and fended off the Saudis’ irritating full-court press with sleek passing while hitting crucial baskets.

Back-to-back triples by Hontiveros and another trey by Pennisi gave the San Miguel-RP Team its biggest lead, 70-40. The Saudis tried to stage a comeback by clustering seven straight points and getting more physical.

But Pena, Canaleta and Pennisi neutralized them with steady stint from the line.

"It’s one game left. We’ve been here for 10 days and I hope we bring the same energy tomorrow (today)," said Reyes.

gameface_one
08-28-2006, 09:44 AM
RP-SMC keeps Brunei title
mb.com.ph




BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN — Danny Seigle gave his best performance when it mattered most as San Miguel-RP team crushed Darwin Airport Resort All-Stars of Australia, 96-65, last night to retain the Shell Rimula Brunei Cup crown at the National Indoor Stadium here.


Hardly a factor in the team’s previous wins in the elims, Seigle proved unstoppable from afar as he sizzled with 25 points and led the RP side to a convincing win.

The San Miguel-sponsored RP squad thus completed a seven-game sweep of the tournament.

"As usual, were very happy pero nakakapanghinayang just like our past accomplishment," said coach Chot Reyes, referring to the Philippines’ continued failure to compete in FIBA-sanctioned events.

Prior to Brunei, a hastily-formed national selection completed a two-game sweep of Lebanon which saw action in the ongoing world championship in Japan.

Seigle’s was later named Most Valuable Player of the tournament.

In the semifinals, The Filipinos survived the roughhousing tactics of the Saudi Arabia All-Stars on their way to a 79-48 victory.

Dondon Hontiveros had welts all over while Dennis Miranda, Olsen Racela and Nino Canaleta limped into the locker room nursing bruises.

Even Asi Taulava, Mark Telan, Dorian Pena and Danny Seigle weren’t spared as they got bumped, hacked and smacked with the crudeness of a street toughie.

"The other team wasn’t even concerned about playing basketball. They just want to throw their bodies at us and play it rough," said Reyes.

The Australians, seeded third in the crossover semifinals, stunned the SK Knights, 90-83, in the other semifinal match

"They got pissed off because they couldn’t score," said Reyes. "There was even a time in the third quarter that we’re getting drawn into that situation."

The Filipinos raced to a 23-9 advantage with Taulava lording it over in the lane, Renren Ritualo and Seigle draining their three-pointers and Pena forming a vicious frontline threat with Taulava.

Mark Telan then came up with eight points in a dazzling 16-1 tear while Seigle and Wesley Gonzales also joined the fray as the defending champions erected a comfortable 46-28 lead at the half.

Officiating suddenly tilted in favor of the Saudis during the third as the referees slapped a total of nine personal fouls on the Filipinos.

Without a single field goal, the Saudis converted 10 of their 14 freethrows in that period and the match began to turn ugly at every possession.

kryptonite
08-29-2006, 09:14 PM
FIBA - Olympic qualifying tournament added for 2008 Olympics

SAITAMA (FIBA World Championship) - Twelve teams from throughout the world will participate in a new men's Olympic qualifying tournament in July 2008 to secure one of the final three berths for the Beijing Summer Games.

The tournament will take place from July 7-13 2008 in a yet-to-be announced location and will follow next summer's five continental qualification campaigns, which will yield seven Olympic spots - two each from Europe and the Americas and one a piece from Africa, Asia and Oceania.

The breakdown of the 12 teams participating in the July 2008 event is as follows: Europe will have four representatives, the Americas three, two each from Africa and Asia and one from Oceania - with the best ranked remaining teams from the 2007 continental qualifiers competing.

The three teams who secure their berth at the new tournament and the seven continental qualifiers from next summer will be joined at the 2008 Olympics by hosts China and the gold medalists of the 2006 FIBA World Championship.

Below is a quick breakdown of the women's Olympic qualification procedure.

Besides the hosts China and the 2006 World Champions, each continent has one berth from the 2007 continental qualification campaign while the final five berths will be determined at the new Olympic qualifying tournament played June 9-15, 2008.

The 12-team tournament will include four European nations, three from the Americas, two each from Africa and Asia and one from Oceania.

By David Hein, FIBA

Note: Medyo mahirap mag-qualify for the next olympics. The Philippines should enter the finals of the next Asian Championships in 2007 at the very least. Getting one of the three qualifying berths in the pre-olympic qualifiers in 2008 is easier said than done. Kung baga, suntok sa buwan.

clutchjedi
08-30-2006, 12:57 PM
Note: Medyo mahirap mag-qualify for the next olympics. The Philippines should enter the finals of the next Asian Championships in 2007 at the very least. Getting one of the three qualifying berths in the pre-olympic qualifiers in 2008 is easier said than done. Kung baga, suntok sa buwan.


Oo nga, assuming China wins, we need to finish #2 to them to qualify directly for the Olympics. Kaya better if we're able to avoid them sa semis.

If we finish #3 or #4, we make it to the qualifying tournament and need to finish in its top three. Pero with Europe's #3-6 contenders (e.g. France, Lithuania, Italy, Germany) and the Americas' #4-6 (e.g. Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela) competing, it would be a good learning experience, but we'd be looking at a near-bottom finish.

But even in case that happens, if we do as Angola did and stretch those teams to the limit (and maybe catch one on an off-night like Lebanon did France), it would be very good for Philippine basketball.

Mel
08-30-2006, 03:40 PM
Di ba may automatic slot na ang China as host of the Olympics?

That leaves 2 more qualifying slots in the FIBA Asia.
Assuiming China wins the FIBA Asia title in 2007, our best hope is to land 2nd or 3rd.
The teams who will be tough opponents in the climb for 2nd-3rd would then be
Lebanon,South Korea, Kazahkstan,Japan, and Qatar.

clutchjedi
08-30-2006, 08:11 PM
Ang intindi ko kasi the 12 Olympic slots are

1- world champ
1- host (China)

7- continental qualifiers excluding wc & host
(americas-2, euro-2, asia-1, africa-1, oceania-1)

and then the last 3 are from the July qualifying tournament.

So Asia has 2 slots in that July qualifying tournament...
but just 1 direct Olympic slot from the FIBA Asia tourney

At least that's how I understood it from the above quoted article :) Medyo confusing lang kasi its 2nd paragraph describes the Olympic slots, while the 3rd describes the July tournament slots

kryptonite
08-31-2006, 06:28 AM
Ang intindi ko kasi the 12 Olympic slots are

1- world champ
1- host (China)

7- continental qualifiers excluding wc & host
(americas-2, euro-2, asia-1, africa-1, oceania-1)

and then the last 3 are from the July qualifying tournament.

So Asia has 2 slots in that July qualifying tournament...
but just 1 direct Olympic slot from the FIBA Asia tourney

At least that's how I understood it from the above quoted article :) Medyo confusing lang kasi its 2nd paragraph describes the Olympic slots, while the 3rd describes the July tournament slots


Pare, tama naman intindi mo. Basta yung Asian championships in 2007, kukuha lang ng one slot as representative from Asia (aside from China, kasi may automatic slot na sila as hosts). If China wins the Asian championships in 2007, the runner-up gets the olympic slot.

Yung Pre-olympic qualifiers sa July 2008 will be composed of 12-teams which includes four European nations, three from the Americas, two each from Africa and Asia and one from Oceania. I just don't know how they will pick the teams. Maybe, if ever, we don't qualify in 2007, the team shouldn't finish below 4th place in the Asian championships (assuming kasama ang China sa top 4).

kryptonite
08-31-2006, 06:42 AM
Pero, in my own opinion, we should get the olympic slot in the 2007 Asian Championships because the opposition there is inferior compared to the Pre-olympic qualifiers in 2008. May european teams at south american teams na kasama dun.

Let's assume, USA is the world champion, China as hosts get a slot. ARG and BRA (Americas), GRE and ESP (Europe), LEB (Asia), ANG (Africa), and AUS (Oceania) gets the other 7 slots. So that's 9 slots total out of the 12 slots.

Can we beat GER, FRA, KOR, NZL, ITA, PUR, NIG, LTU??? May tulog tayo dyan. Placing in the top 3 is a very tall order. Beating Korea is easier said than done. Baka Japan lang may tulog tayo. We should stock our team with great rebounders and excellent perimeter shooters, kahit hindi excellent 3-pt shooters basta consistent. Kung baga, pag open ang player, sure ball ang tira. Ang napapansin ko lang sa players natin walang consistent. Pati sa free-throw palpak. Kaya nga free, dapat money in the bank, just observe the european and south american teams. Huwag yung USA kasi mahina sa FT shooting pati sa perimeter shooting.

The last players I watched who were excellent FT shooter are Allan Caidic, Samboy Lim, Alvin Patrimonio and Ato Agustin. If you watched the last Asiad, FT shooting ang ikina-talo natin (note: Olsen Racela).

kryptonite
08-31-2006, 06:49 AM
My prediction is Yao Ming might not play in next years Asian Championships because China already has an automatic slot in the 2008 Olympics. They'll just use it to hone their back up center Yi Jianliang. Yao will just use the time to rest and prevent anymore injuries. Kaya, let's grab this oppurtunity and train for this tournament.

gameface_one
08-31-2006, 09:21 AM
RP squad calls for ‘sacrifice’


By JOEL ORELLANA
The Manila Times Reporter
abs-cbnnews.com

The Philippines’ finest basketball players know of a simple solution that could lead to the country’s participation in the more prestigious international competitions like the Asian Games.

"The word is sacrifice," said Danny Seigle, San Miguel Beer’s high-scoring forward, who was among the players hoping basketball officials will get the cue, get their acts together and work for the Philippines’ reinstatement with the International Basketball Federation.

"We sacrifice even if we know our careers are on the line. The risk is high. If we want to take risks, we want to take them for a reason," Seigle added.

The 1999 Rookie of the Year based his sentiment on personal experience, as he suffered a career-threatening ankle injury while playing in a tune-up game for the RP team.

That team was preparing for the 2002 Busan Asian Games, but the injury sidelined Seigle from the Philippine Basketball Association for almost two years.

Asi Taulava, a teammate of Seigle on the RP 5 that defended the Sultan’s Cup in Brunei last week, shared the same view.

"People don’t understand how we’ve been working so hard for the national team. Outside the PBA, they’re not looking at the bigger picture," he said.

National team mentor Chot Reyes said the Brunei tournament could be the last one for the present RP squad, as he decided to put the whole program on hold with the country still being suspended by the world governing body FIBA.

A glimmer of hope came on Monday after officials of the Basketball Association of the Philippines and Pilipinas Basketball, while in Tokyo, agreed in principle to merge and form a joint cage body that will earn FIBA recognition.

The FIBA Central Board gave the Filipino officials up to September 30 to form the unified body before it lifts the suspension.

But even if the suspension is rescinded, Reyes doubts if the squad made up of PBA stars like Seigle and Taulava will still be tapped for the Asian Games in Qatar come December. PBA chairman Ricky Vargas has already said the league would not be able to send its players to Doha.

The 15th Asiad, which runs from December 1 to 15, conflicts with the crucial eliminations phase of the PBA Philippine Cup that starts October 1.

Reyes’ decision to put the program on hold was also prodded by the still-unclear picture being drawn up by the country’s cage leaders.

"The [RP Team] program is being held in abeyance, pending final notice," Reyes reiterated.

"Nothing is clear as of now. If anything happens, then I will sit down with the [PBA] commissioner [Noli Eala] and [team sponsor] San Miguel. For now, we’re on hold."

The specter of not being able to represent the country in the Asiad, or next year’s qualifying tournament for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, has caused anxiety among the present members of the national pool.

"It’s possible. This could be the end. After this, what will we do?" Taulava asked.

For now, the possibilities rankle the nationals, especially after they beat Asian No. 2 Lebanon twice in a friendly match here in Manila before the visitors flew to Saitama, Japan, for the FIBA World Basketball Championships.

"Look at the Lebanon series, we could have walked out and let them [Lebanese] even it up at 1-1. But there was so much pride on the line," said Taulava.

The blame can easily be pinned on the "struggle" of local basketball leaders, according to Seigle.

"There’s a struggle and we don’t know how long will it be,’" said the Most Valuable Player of the Brunei tourney. "It’s sad. I love to play for the national team, but that struggle has been an obstacle.’"

gameface_one
08-31-2006, 09:27 AM
PBA to support RP team after Asian Games
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/31/2006

The cage pact forged in Tokyo over the weekend augurs well for Philippine basketball and PBA commissioner Noli Eala sees the pro league fully supporting the national team under the new basketball body after the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar.
"Tuloy-tuloy na ito. The PBA will help in the creation of the new body. Once it’s done, we’ll be happy to support the RP team," Eala told The STAR yesterday.

With the impending reinstatement of the Philippines in the FIBA rolls, Eala said he’s instructed national coach Chot Reyes to prepare a "post-Asian Games program."

"With the unity in sight, the more reason that we should be prepared with our national team," said Eala.

But fielding in a PBA team in the Doha Asian Games is out of the question.

Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP) president Joey Lina said the PBA doesn’t have a commitment in the Asian Games based on the MoU the pro league signed with the country’s governing body in basketball.

"They don’t have a commitment in the Asian Games," said Lina. "I believe the PBA’s commitment is to play in the Asian Championship and qualifying events to the World Basketball and the 2008 Beijing Olympics."

Meanwhile, Eala said the Filipino basketball leaders "showed highest form of statesmanship" in agreeing to unite and end the leadership crisis in an effort to reinstate the country in the FIBA roster.

Eala said the new agreement already "speaks of the creation of a new body at the expense of the BAP and Pilipinas Basketball. It was a difficult process and difficult decision. People should support this."

For Eala, the Philippines scored "four victories" with leaders of the BAP and PB sitting down in a meeting prior to FIBA World Congress.

"First, we’re able to forge a new agreement. Second, the parties concerned bent backwards with both willing to lose their identities for the greater interest of Philippine basketball. Third, the Philippine Olympic Committee affixed its approval for the creation of the new body. Lastly, the problem was solved solely by Filipino leaders without the intervention of the FIBA," said Eala.

"There’s a lot to be proud of in what Filipino basketball leaders did in Japan. That’s why afterwards, we’re toasting one another," Eala added.

The PBA commissioner said the agreement reached in Japan was completely different from the one agreed upon by the BAP and the country’s major stakeholders after the POC had a memorandum of understanding with the FIBA last year.

The POC-FIBA MoU has been superseded by the BAP-PB agreement in Japan.

BAP and PB issued a joint communiqué Monday, agreeing to unite and end their dispute after a marathon meeting at the Prince Park Tower Hotel in Tokyo.

The communique was submitted to FIBA president Bob Elphiston of Australia, secretary-general Patrick Baumann of Switzerland, former secretary-general Borislav Stankovic of Yugoslavia and FIBA-Asia secretary-general Dato Yeoh Chok Hock of Malaysia.

The FIBA Central Board took up the joint communiqué during its congress Tuesday and expressed satisfaction that all parties are unifying their efforts to end the conflict and allow Philippine basketball to play in international competitions again.

The Central Board turned down a motion to lift the suspension immediately and, instead, decided on a conditional end to the ban.

It said the suspension will be lifted by Sept. 30 or earlier once the merged organization is launched as a democratic, countrywide and mass-based representation of various sectors involved in the sport, a national Congress is convened and officers are elected.

In the joint communique, the BAP and PB agreed to merge into a single, united organization that will seek membership in the POC and eventually take the BAP’s place as FIBA’s country affiliate.

It was also stipulated that a three-man panel, made up of the BAP and PB presidents and a third member picked by both, will be created within five days to finalize the merged organization’s Constitution and By-Laws; review, verify and validate the list of members submitted by PB and the BAP to the FIBA Central Board special committee formed to hear the Philippine case, and convene a national congress for the election of officers.

A period of 30 days from Sept. 1 was given the three-man panel to complete its tasks.

gameface_one
08-31-2006, 09:28 AM
Chot puts RP cage program on hold
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 08/31/2006

National coach Chot Reyes has put on hold his program for the national team pending formal notice on the status of Philippine basketball following the Filipino cage leaders’ meeting in Japan over the weekend.

"For now, the program is held in abeyance pending formal notice on what happened in Japan," said Reyes who, at the moment, is concentrating on his new job as coach of the San Miguel Beer squad in the PBA.

"If something positive really happened, then I have to sit down with (PBA) commissioner Noli Eala and the San Miguel management and discuss the matter," Reyes added. "For now, it’s hard to tell. For all we know, they have already another coach in mind."

Reyes decided to shelve the program halfway through his three-year plan of training and preparing the team with the end goal of the Philippines gaining a return stint in the Olympics in Beijing in 2008.

"We’d been sidetracked in our program because of the suspension. For one, we missed last year’s FIBA-Asia championship, thus, losing the opportunity to qualify in the world championship," said Reyes.

"Wala na yung programa na yon," Reyes rued.

While practically all his players insist they want to play in the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar this December, Reyes understands that it’s a foregone conclusion with the Asian Games running smack with the crucial stretch of the elimination round of the PBA Philippine Cup.

Reyes said what they could look forward to is the 2007 FIBA-Asia championship also in Japan which serves as the qualifier for the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

However, only one Olympic slot is to be contested in that FIBA tourney with China, being the host country, already seeded in the 2008 Olympics.

If China rules the qualifier, the Philippines must finish second place to make it to the Beijing Games.

"That tournament is the one we should really prepare for. But I don’t want to move any further at the moment," said Reyes.

As part of his original program, the Nationals had stints in the Jones Cup, the Brunei Sultan Cup, in a Las Vegas pro-am tourney, in a Qatar mini-tourney and played a number of tune-up matches including against Lebanon and the Athletes in Action.

full battle gear
08-31-2006, 10:42 AM
PBA leaves Asiad stint up to Chot Reyes

By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 03:07am (Mla time) 08/31/2006

Published on page A24 of the August 31, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

WITH THE Asiad originally not in the long term Philippine Basketball Association program, the pro league yesterday asked national coach Chot Reyes “to study” whether to coach a non-professional team in Doha, Qatar or drop the event altogether.

“It (Asiad stint) was not really in the (long-term) plan,” PBA commissioner Noli Eala told the Inquirer over the phone.

“Even before all these problems arose, the Asiad was not part of the PBA’s obligation. But after the Qatar Games, the PBA will resume fulfilling its commitment, hopefully, all the way to the (Beijing) Olympics (in 2008).”

Eala said that he asked Reyes to look into the possibility of extending the PBA’s participation in the Asian Games -- if there would ever be one at all.

Reyes had been tasked to draw up a three-year plan that would get the Philippines back to playing in the Olympics before all the leadership squabbles in the cage scene arose last year.

This was among the major points in the memorandum of agreement signed by the PBA with the Basketball Association of the Philippines before the falling out between the BAP and Philippine Olympic Committee occurred last year. The MOA did not include participation in the Asiad.

“What we will service are continental qualifying for the Olympics,” Eala said.

The commissioner said that the PBA commitment stays as preparations -- with Reyes still at the helm -- will resume at the end of the Philippine Cup next year.

Eala said that the target tournament, assuming that the Philippines does get reinstated to the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), would be the Asian championships scheduled in Saitama, Japan, next year. The last shot at an Olympic slot would be the final qualifying event to be held in July 2008.

full battle gear
09-03-2006, 09:51 AM
PBA firm on stand not to send team to Asian Games
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 09/03/2006

The Philippine Basketball Association is firm on its stand not to send a team to the coming Doha Asian Games despite informal pleas from the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee for the pro league to reconsider its decision.

"It’s important that people should understand that the PBA has to be successful and stable to be able to fully support the national team. To disrupt our plans now would be counter-productive," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"The PBA has proudly worn the country’s flag in a number of international competitions even in difficult moments. The PBA has taken the cudgels and has been a key member in forging the unification effort with the BAP and Pilipinas Basketball. But we’ve made our position very clear from the very beginning," Eala added.

"It’s going to be a board decision. But the chance (of the PBA allowing its players to play in Qatar) is very remote with the fact that the All-Filipino tourney is about to start," said PBA board chair Ricky Vargas.

"In the first place, tsismis pa lang lahat ito because the POC or the PSC has no formal communication with us. So pagusapan man ng board, informal lang siguro," Vargas added.

The PBA board of governors has a scheduled meeting Wednesday.

The PSC and POC have said they would still push for the pro league’s representation in the basketball competitions in the Asiad despite the PBA’s earlier pronouncement that participation in the quadrennial games is no longer in its calendar of activities.

PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, the chef de mission of the RP Asiad delegation, returned from an organizational trip in Doha Friday and announced that "85,000 Filipinos in Qatar" are keenly awaiting the arrival of the basketball team.

Earlier, POC president Jose Cojuangco said in his weekly radio program that the Philippines should send the best team in the Asian Games or none at all.

But PBA officials just wouldn’t bend backward.

"I don’t think the PBA has ever lacked entertainment and support to our many OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) who love basketball. In fact, we’ve just competed in a tournament in Qatar precisely for Pinoys living there," said Eala.

In a Memorandum of Agreement with the Basketball of Association of the Philippines two years ago, the PBA committed support for the national team in the FIBA-Asia championship and, if it qualified, in the World Championship and the Olympics, leaving the other tournaments for amateur players.

It reformatted its calendar so as not to have conflict with the FIBA programs.

National coach Chot Reyes’ own personal opinion on the coming Doha Asian Games is to bring the best team or not send a team at all now that he’s tasked to formulate a new program for the national team with the impending unification of Philippine basketball.

Reyes stressed though that he’s willing to help in whatever manner if asked by the new body and allowed by the San Miguel Corp. management.

Reyes was asked by the PBA commissioner to make a "post-Asian Games plan" for the national team upon the latter’s return from the Tokyo, Japan meeting of the country’s cage leaders.

full battle gear
09-06-2006, 11:50 AM
PBA reviewing Asiad stand

By JOEL ORELLANA, The Manila Times Reporter and FRANK CALAPRE, The Manila Times Correspondent
www.abs-cbnnews.com


Sending a national basketball team to compete in the Doha Asian Games is still a possibility—one that was apparently enhanced Tuesday by the Philippine Basketball Association reviewing its stand on not participating in the quadrennial tournament.

Though it already said that sending a PBA-backed national team, as in previous Asiads, is out of the question this year, the league through its board of governors will review that position in a regular board meeting Wednesday.

An insider told Sports Times that the PBA is reconsidering its position after the tycoon and sports patron Manny V. Pangilinan, the owner of the league’s Talk ’N Text team, was reportedly being groomed to head a new local basketball body.

Ricky Vargas, Talk ’N Text’s league representative, now chairs the PBA board.

On Saturday, Pangilinan accepted an offer from the Basketball Association of the Philippines and Pilipinas Basketball to head a three-man panel tasked to unite the two groups and replace the 60-year-old BAP as a member of the International Basketball Federation or FIBA.

The world governing body has suspended the country from international competitions since June last year until it forms a united organization by the end of the month. This came after FIBA and the local basketball bodies signed a joint communiqué in Tokyo, Japan last week during the World Basketball Championships.

"Right now, the PBA is on status quo regarding the issue of the Asian Games. But it will be reviewed during the board meeting today," said the Times’ source, who asked not to be identified.

"But since MVP was named to head the new cage body, they want a review of the league’s position for the Asian Games," the source added.

Meanwhile, Pilipinas Basketball president Bernie Atienza said the country’s participation in the Asian Games basketball event is still an option that would be settled once the federation replacing the BAP is already in place.

"It would be best for us to wait until the new federation can already take over and the country’s suspension by the FIBA is already lifted," said Atienza during Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Forum at the Pantalan Restaurant in Malate, Manila.

"We have already started reviewing the list of affiliated members by our respective organizations and there was no disagreement," he added.

The PBA source said the Asian Games is actually not on the top of the league board’s agenda Wednesday, since it will also discuss changes to the PBA rules.

Among them is a proposal from PBA Commissioner Noli Eala for a "three-point dunk" rule, in which a player would be awarded three points for a converted dunk.

Eala has said that the Asian Games was not part of the league’s priority tournaments when the national team led by coach Chot Reyes was formed. Only the FIBA Asian qualifier next year and possibly the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China are high on the league’s list.

Eala added that the Asian Games, which will run from December 1 to 15 in Doha, Qatar, will run smack into the elimination-round schedule of the coming Philippine Cup.

Wang-Bu
09-06-2006, 07:39 PM
RP Team ba talaga isang team kapag ganyang sandamakmak na mongrel ang nasa lineup?

full battle gear
09-07-2006, 07:23 AM
PBA: No pros for Asiad

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 02:07am (Mla time) 09/07/2006

Published on Page A21 of the September 7, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

DON’T EXPECT THE stars of the Philippine Basketball Association to don the national colors in the Asian Games.

The league’s board of governors yesterday stood firm on an earlier decision to keep its stars out of the Doha, Qatar Asiad in December even if the suspension of the FIBA (International Basketball Federation) is lifted.

“The board reiterated its commitment to the national team but regrets that the league cannot participate in the Asian Games,” said commissioner Noli Eala after the board’s emergency meeting where some rule changes were approved in time for the opening of its 32nd season on Oct. 1.

“It runs consistent with our agreement (with the BAP) that the PBA would participate in the Asian qualifiers of the world championships and the Olympics. The Asian Games, however, is not part of that commitment and it was agreed upon with finality,” he added.

The pro league had taken care of fielding the RP five to the Asian Games since 1990, but was focused on the Olympic qualifier following a change in its format in 2004.

full battle gear
09-07-2006, 07:28 AM
PBA rules out stint in Doha
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 09/07/2006

The PBA board of governors ruled with finality not to send a team to the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar late this year in a meeting yesterday in the PBA office at the Ultra Complex in Pasig.

The board, chaired by Ricky Vargas of Talk n Text, reiterated its stand not to send PBA players to Doha since it would disrupt the league’s schedule in its new season. Vargas included the Asiad issue in the board meeting following pleas from the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee for the league to reconsider its decision.

"The board reiterates its commitment to the RP team but regrets its non-participation in the Asian Games," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"It runs consistent with our agreement with the BAP (Basketball Association of the Philippines) that the Asiad is not part of our commitment for the national team program. That’s the decision of the PBA with finality," Eala said, adding it would concentrate its efforts instead in putting up a team to next year’s Olympic qualifier.

"We’ll throw all our resources for the national team to make good in that tournament. Our goal is to make it to the Beijing Olympics in 2008," said Eala.

PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, the chef de mission of the RP Asiad delegation, appealed to the pro league since "85,000 Filipinos in Qatar" are keenly awaiting the arrival of the basketball team for the Games. Ramirez led a group of Filipino officials in an inspection tour of the Doha venues last year.

Earlier, POC president Jose Cojuangco said that the Philippines should send the best team in the Asian Games or not send any at all.

PBA players carried the cudgels in the last four Asian Games, making to the Final Four on all occasions.

full battle gear
09-13-2006, 11:18 AM
Politics stymied progress in basketball — Black
www.mb.com.ph


By NICK GIONGCO

NORMAN BLACK has spent more than half of his life in the country either playing or coaching basketball that he knows not only what ails the sport but what is needed to remedy the problem.

Black, who called the shots for the Philippine team that placed fourth in the 1994 Hiroshima Asian Games, reiterated yesterday that it would be very hard to form a competitive squad for Doha in December.

"Not the PBA players because I don’t see how you’re going to accomplish that," Black told a handful of scribes after gracing the weekly PSA Forum.

The PBA has thumbed down several requests by some sectors to lend its players to the national team for the Asian Games slated on Dec. 1 to 15 due to a conflict in schedule.

"How are you going to pull those players out of the PBA? I think that is going to be very difficult," said the 48-year-old Black, who served as an assistant to Robert Jaworski when an all-pro team placed second behind China in the 1990 Beijing Games.

"If you pull players out in the middle of the conference, then the people will not support the PBA because its stars will be in the Asian Games," stressed Black, winner of 10 PBA titles, including a rare grand slam.

As to the possibility of fielding a squad from the Philippine Basketball League (PBL), Black said there’s nothing wrong with that "but they probably won’t win it."

PBL Commissioner Chino Trinidad had earlier indicated that he will make available the best players in the league if called to serve the country.

Trinidad, however, did not say categorically whether the team he envisioned to form – if the services of PBL is tapped – has the capability to win the gold in the Asian Games.

But Trinidad stressed that there’s a need to establish an orderly basketball program – one that will discover and train young talents for international tournaments.

"The Asian Games could be the jump-off point for that program and the Doha Games could be their baptism of fire," said Trinidad, who still believes that the 1988 feat of coach Joe Lipa is still achievable.

Backstopped then by Allan Caidic and Samboy Lim, the RP team won the bronze medal, a feat that sparked an outpouring of joy and pride for the basketball-crazy nation.

For his part, Black said the problem in basketball should have been settled a long time ago if the so-called "leaders" just stayed away from politics.

"The training program was in place but it’s been stymied because of all the politics that’s been going on," he said.

Black, who started out as an import for Tefilin in 1981, agreed with Trinidad that a long-range program is needed. The old practice was plucking out the best players from each team in the PBA.

"It has already proven disastrous," said Black, obviously aware of the track record of the Philippines in the Asiad beginning 1990.

In 1998 in Bangkok, a team coached by Tim Cone landed third but the one handled by Jong Uichico in 2002 placed fourth after narrowly missing the chance to engage China in the gold medal game after a heartbreaker to Korea in the semifinals.

Still, Black believes that China can be defeated by the Filipinos.

"If Yao Ming doesn’t show up, we can beat them," said Black, noting that is it unlikely that the 7-6 slot man will be allowed to travel to Qatar by the Houston Rockets during the regular NBA season.

pachador
09-13-2006, 11:53 AM
bakit ba? e yung idolo mo na si jaworski ay isang mongrel din ano !! ang tatay ni jaworksi ay kano din !

wala nang pure na filipino ngayon maliban sa mga aete-negrito ano. tingnan mo kahit yung mga home-grown na pilipino ay merong mga halo yan at kung wala ay hindi yan aabot ng lampas 6 feet maliban kung abnoy. kundi halong kastila ay halong bombay, insik, hapon, kano, european, australyano , arabo, etc , ang mga players natin ngayon na homegrown o galing sa abroad. habang tumatagal ay nagiging mongrel nation tayo or sa espanol ay mestizo(mixed blood) nation. ikaw wang-bu ay mestizo ka rin aminin mo na kasi e. sa tingin ko naman ay hindi ka aeta-negrito. yung mga malays at indonesians na pumunta sa pilipinas ay hindi na yan mga orig katulad ng aetas. itong mga malays at indonesians ay dumagdag sa average height natin. Dati ang height ng ancestors nating na mga aeta ay below 5 feet pero nung dumating mga malays at indonesians lumampas ng 5 feet tapos dumating mga insik, bombay, kastila,etc naging mga 5'4" to 5'8" average height natin. ako naman ay bisoy lampas 5 feet na(bisayang tisoy hehehe)
=)


RP Team ba talaga isang team kapag ganyang sandamakmak na mongrel ang nasa lineup?

full battle gear
09-14-2006, 11:18 AM
Black backs PBA move on Asiad
By Abac Cordero
The Philippine Star 09/14/2006

Look elsewhere, and not at the PBA, if you want to send a basketball team to this year’s Asian Games.

Coach Norman Black, who knows Philippine basketball like the palm of his hands, the other day said he doesn’t expect the PBA to reverse its decision not to represent the country in the quadrennial event.

Black, winner of 10 PBA titles and head coach of the RP team to the 1994 Hiroshima Asian Games, said it would be disadvantageous for the PBA to disrupt its calendar just to be part of the coming Asian Games.

"To tell the PBA now to change its calendar or pull its best players for the Asian Games could be disastrous," said the 6-foot-5 American, who’s either played or coached in the Philippines since 1981.

Black said it would be very difficult for the PBA, which begins its 2006 season next month, to run the league while its best players are competing in the Asian Games.

"If you pull players out in the middle of the conference, then the people will not support the PBA because its stars will be in the Asian Games. And if you don’t win (in Doha) then it’s going to hurt the PBA even more," he said.

The PBA has represented the country in the last four Asian Games, finishing second under coach Robert Jaworski, fourth under Black, third under Tim Cone, and fourth under Jong Uichico.

But last year, the PBA forged an agreement with the Basketball Association of the Philippines that it would no longer be part of the Asian Games.

The PBA completely changed its calendar so it could instead represent the country in other FIBA events like the Asian or World Championships in the hope of making it to the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

"I don’t think it would be fair to the PBA to pull its (best) players out of the league in the middle of the season. This should have been settled a long time ago," said Black as some still hope for a PBA stint in Doha.

" I think that will be very difficult. How are you going to pull those players out of the PBA? The experience from the past was that it has to be calendared directly. Otherwise, the PBA will suffer," he explained.

The Philippine Basketball League under commissioner Chino Trinidad said the other day it’ll be more than willing to represent the country in Doha, if and when it’s asked to.

"Of course you can send a PBL team and they can represent the country well but they probably won’t win it," said Black, hinting that only a PBA selection could have a crack at the Asian Games gold.

gameface_one
12-26-2006, 04:00 PM
Chot says RP 5 running out of time
Manila Standard Today




NATIONAL basketball coach Chot Reyes said time is running out and the sooner the unified basketball organization Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas is recognized by the Philippine Olympic Committee and the Fiba ban is lifted, the better for the country’s bid to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Reyes said the Southeast Asia Basketball Association tournament in May, which serves as a qualifier for the Fiba Asia Championships from July 19 to 29 in Japan was obviously going to be very easy for Filipino players, but that the first order of business was to “re-acquaint ourselves with the schedule for the year and then agree on a selection process for the national team.”

Reyes noted that in his original schedule, the country should have had a team for the Fiba Asia qualifiers by this time. Since there is no team at present, Reyes said he would have to sit down with the coaching staff and “re-assess that and figure out the selection process.”

He said he will run all this by Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner Noli Eala.

The national team head coach said he would start with the team he had, explaining that “all those guys, who put in the time and the effort, will have the inside track.”

Reyes added that with the current PBA schedule, there is not enough time. But he said, to compensate, the team will have to be practicing way before the July 3 close of the (PBA import-reinforced) conference and also use the time between conferences to play again internationally.

In fact, the president of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas Manny Pangilinan earlier suggested that the team train and compete abroad, perhaps in the United States. Ronnie Nathanielsz

full battle gear
02-06-2007, 11:27 AM
RP team running out of time for Beijing elims
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/06/2007

National coach Chot Reyes said the Philippines is now pressed for time to form a team competitive enough for a realistic chance to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

"We have no more time. If we want to get into the Olympics, the time was yesterday," said Reyes. "Realistically, we have no more chance."

With the impending lifting of the FIBA suspension, Reyes said he has revised his program for the national team now up for approval by PBA commissioner Noli Eala and the leadership of the unified cage body.

"I have submitted the program. It has several options and it’s up to them to make the decision," said Reyes. "We have to iron out things immediately. Hopefully we can meet after our Wednesday game (in the PBA)."

With five months left before the staging of the FIBA-Asia championship in Japan, Reyes is inclined to name his final 15 players right away and train them all the way through the Japan joust which is the Asian qualifier for the Beijing Games.

"In my mind, we really have no more time left. We have to form the team now, play them in SEABA and train them all the way through," said Reyes.

More than 30 players have played for the RP team in various international tournaments under the program of Reyes the last two years. Reyes said no one has a lock for a slot in the squad to be sent to Japan.

full battle gear
02-06-2007, 11:29 AM
Chot Reyes: We’re nowhere near an Olympic slot


Inquirer
Last updated 06:10am (Mla time) 02/06/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- And now for the hard part; a little rain on the parade.

For all the pageantry and air of unity that cloaked yesterday’s Unity Congress, there was a little footnote that should serve as some sort of a reality check to temper the public’s grand hoop dreams.

While the congress was a good first step to putting order in the country’s fractured basketball structure, it did not, in any way, move the Philippines closer to an Olympic slot.

“We’re nowhere near,” said Chot Reyes, the national team head coach tasked by the fledgling BAP-SBP to steer the country to an Olympic participation in Beijing next year.

“It’s so far, it’s not even funny.”

“Let’s be honest, let’s be realistic,” said Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Noli Eala, the designated spokesperson of the new federation.

“But whether this is actually the right formula, the cure-all for every basketball problem in the country … we cannot say just yet.”
Even Manny V. Pangilinan admits it will take guts to take a step backward to help improve the local sport.

“We have to be patient,” he said. “The problems of basketball isn’t going to be fixed overnight. It’s going to take a really determined effort to improve Philippine basketball.” -- Francis Ochoa

full battle gear
02-06-2007, 11:30 AM
RP quintet will get all it needs, says MVP

By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 06:10am (Mla time) 02/06/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The first declaration that Manny V. Pangilinan made when he emerged from the executive board meeting of the Basketball Association of the Philippines-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas was that he was giving the national team an open checkbook to finance its bid for an Olympic berth.

“Whatever they need -- training, budget, whatever -- I think we should give our all-out support to the national team,” said Pangilinan, the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. chair.

“Frankly, I will try to persuade the PLDT Foundation to help out and of course, myself personally,” he added, when asked where the funds will come from.

“We will also solicit help from the private sector. We want this to be a broad-based support for the team.”

Pangilinan doesn’t know how much will be actually spent but he had a peek at the budget national coach Chot Reyes proposed and said “it is rather comprehensive.”

Those side comments were just part of the many sidelights in yesterday’s Unity Congress at the Dusit Hotel, which included laid-back comments from a Patrick Baumann who looked far more relaxed compared to the last and only time he was in the country -- where he also mediated in a basketball war that was actually the ancestor to this one.

“But it’s a pleasure,” Baumann, the influential international basketball federation (FIBA) secretary general, said of his role of stepping in to help the country every time a crisis pops up.

“If it serves the purpose of having basketball played on the court, then this is my role and my duty and I have to do it,” Baumann said.

Baumann jovial during the press conference, even citing his wishes now that the basketball impasse finally came to an end.

full battle gear
02-06-2007, 11:36 AM
Chot Reyes: We’re back to practice

By WAYLON GALVEZ
www.mb.com.ph


HE WAS calm as usual, sitting silently in one table except for some occasions when reporters pestered him about the team’s intriguing semis series with Red Bull in the Talk ’N Text PBA Philippine Cup.

Even when the participants of the Unity Congress erupted in a dam-burst of joy following the assurance of FIBA Secretary-General Patrick Baumann that the country’s suspension will soon be lifted, San Miguel Beer coach Chot Reyes remained composed.

But beneath that was the excitement only Reyes could explain.

His eyes sparkling from time to time, Reyes appeared to be the happiest person inside the ballroom of Dusit Hotel in Makati.

After almost two years of uncertainly, the Philippines can now entertain hopes of playing in the qualifying round for next year’s Beijing Olympics.

"It’s an opportunity for us," said Reyes during yesterday’s Unity Congress where the Basketball Association of the Philippines and Pilipinas Basketball were finally merged.

"I’m glad that finally rational heads prevailed. We can’t wait to get back to practice," Reyes said.

As soon as the world governing body for basketball lifts its suspension on the country, the national team will be allowed to play anew in various international meets sanctioned by FIBA.

One of the upcoming events the country is eyeing is the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) Championships in May in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The winner of the SEABA meet will represent the region in the FIBA/Asia Championship in July in Saitama, Japan, which is the qualifying tournament for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

"Playing in the SEABA is a good jumpstart, but ultimately or goal is to prepare for the FIBA/Asia and get to the Beijing Olympics," said Reyes.

Several prospects for the national pool under Reyes were also present at the congress, like Danny Seigle, Asi Taulava, Romel Adducul, Willie Miller, Renren Ritualo, Dondon Hontiveros, Rich Alvarez and Tony dela Cruz.

"Find 12 guys for the team is a tough job, because we have a bunch of young talented players. We want to form the best team possible for the SEAB, and then the FIBA-Asia," added Reyes.

Joescoundrel
02-08-2007, 05:43 PM
Here are my 12 picks for the SEABA and the FIBA Asia Qualifiers:

These players can play at least two positions effectively, are all athletic regardless of position, can run, hustle, defend and pass, and except for two of the centers can all hit the medium to long jumper, everything we need to compete on at least even terms with Korea and China.

Guards_

JAY HELTERBRAND, 6'1" 180 pounds, pointguard; he can play any tempo well and knows how to run a team, set assist records in the recently concluded semifinals of the PBA Philippine Cup

WILLIE MILLER, 6'0" 185 pounds, guard; plays both guard spots with aplomb, can set up others or find his own offense, underrated defender, a PBA MVP

MARK CAGUIOA, 6'1" 180 pounds, guard; combo-guard who is a stone scorer, can slice up any defense, has incerdible athleticism and control, knows how to get around and over bigger players, averaged over 30 ppg in the recent PBA Philippine Cup semis

DONDON HONTIVEROS, 6'2" 185 pounds, off-guard; dead-eye shooter with plus range, one of the best at moving without the ball and come off firing, has gotten better as a handler and defender

Forwards_

KELLY WILLIAMS, 6'6" 215 pounds, forward; can do it all: score, rebound, defend, pass, doesn't need the ball to be effective, can be the trap setter on defense

DANNY SEIGLE, 6'6" 215 pounds, forward; arguably the most complete and talented player in the country today, can swing to the backcourt easily, is a matchup nightmare

MARK TELAN, 6'7" 210 pounds, power forward; lacks bulk and strength but makes up for it with a lot of guile and quickness at the position, gets rebounds and blocks shots, has a solid turnaround jumper from as far away as 19 feet

RUDY HATFIELD, 6'5" 210 pounds, power forward; intense player, energy guy, does everything at a high level, opportunistic and relentless rebounder and defender, efficient scorer, tireless runner

Centers_

ASI TAULAVA, 6'9" 240 pounds, center; best center in Philippine basketball although smallish for an international center, strong rebounder, has gotten more creative as a post scorer

DORIAN PENA, 6'8" 245 pounds, center-forward; lunchpail type who will not bitch and moan about getting touches, big strong body and underrated footspeed, can nail the occasional 15-footer

RAFI REAVIS, 6'9" 210 pounds, forward-center; the most athletic center in the country today, can outrun even smaller players, position rebounder and shotblocker with pogo-stick leaping ability and springs

KERBY RAYMUNDO, 6'7" 210 pounds, center-forward; plays both the 5 and 4 with equal effectiveness, can nail the long jumper and even has some driving ability on the high-low exchange

Mikhail
02-08-2007, 06:22 PM
Kailangan rin nating ng mga U18/Youth team selections para sa development..

AnthonyServinio
02-09-2007, 12:59 AM
Kailangan rin nating ng mga U18/Youth team selections para sa development..

Don't worry, our Junior NT will now be in good hands as the program will now have a real coach at the helm. Definitely an upgrade from Graham Lim errand boy Johny Tam.

Under Tam's seven-year (mis)guidance since 2000, the Junior NT sank to record lows never seen before in Philippine basketball history!

full battle gear
02-09-2007, 11:06 AM
BAP-SBP forming team for SEABA

The Philippine Star 02/09/2007

The composition of the national team to the coming Southeast Asia Basketball Association (SEABA) championship could well be known Monday when BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny V. Pangilinan meets with the PBA board of governors at the PLDT office in Makati.

Also invited to the meeting is coach Chot Reyes, who has drawn up three options for the training of the RP team for the FIBA-Asia championship in July in Japan. (Related story on A-28)

One of the options is to immediately put together an all-pro team to be fielded in both the SEABA and the FIBA-Asia championships.

However, the original SBP charter only calls for the pro league to take care of the RP team participation in elite tourneys or the FIBA-Asia championship and up

Reyes said the Philippines is now pressed for time – the main reason why he wants to immediately name the team and train them all the way through the FIBA-Asia joust, which is the regional qualifier for the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

Both Pangilinan and PBA board chair Ricky Vargas have expressed their inclinations to send the best team to SEABA.

"The situation we’re in is far from ideal. So we’re trying to figure out situation which could give us the best chance to qualify for the 2008 Olympics," said Reyes.

Under the original SBP charter, a five-man committee – composed of three SBP board members representing the commercial sector and two representing the school sector – is to draw up the battle plan for the SEABA.

"We’re awaiting notice from the SBP that would empower the PBA to do the preparation for SEABA," said Noli Eala.

"We’re looking at our schedule. We’re looking at teams which could help the national team. We’re catching up because our focus really is to make the Olympics," Eala added. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
02-09-2007, 11:06 AM
Eala says RP 5 underrated
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 02/09/2007

Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) commissioner Noli Eala said yesterday the national team coached by Chot Reyes will surprise skeptics and finish among the top three in the Asian championships in Tokushima, Japan, this July.

"I honestly think, observing the way the team has played in international tournaments the past two years, we’re better than some people give us credit for," said Eala.

"Our players are quicker now. While our system is offense-oriented, our defense is quite polished. We’ve got the international game court sense. We’re a lot better than we were four to six years ago. Even as we were suspended, we kept on playing overseas in the Jones Cup, the Sultan Cup, the Qatar invitationals and the Global Hoops Summit."

Eala said the team is underrated.

"We should be good for at least second or third in Asia," he continued. "We could be a strong third with better than a 50 percent chance to finish second and we’ll be a competitive first."

Eala said at the moment, the national team may not be strong enough to beat China regularly but that shouldn’t deter the players from practicing to someday beat the Asian powerhouse.

"We’ll probably beat China once out of every 10 games but in a knockout match, who knows what will happen," said Eala. "It could be that one game where we’ll win."

But before even laying odds for the national team, Eala said a critical first step is for the BAP-Samahang Basketbol Ng Pilipinas (SBP) to pass a resolution empowering the PBA to take charge in forming the squad and whipping it into title contention.

"The basis for the national team creation and participation by the PBA was a memorandum of agreement with the Basketball Association of the Philippines," said Eala. "That memorandum has been rescinded. We’re now talking with a new association and a new set of officers. Before the PBA Board of Governors can start approving plans for the national team, the BAP-SBP must empower the PBA."

Eala said it is presumed that the PBA will handle the national team for continental or Asian champiaonships upwards, meaning the World Championships and Olympics, while the collegiate and amateur leagues will take care of the regional tournaments and below, meaning the Southeast Asian Games and age-group tournaments.

"The distinction is not specified in the BAP-SBP By-Laws because it isn’t a standard provision in law," said Eala. "That’s why it needs a resolution from the BAP-SBP Board."

Eala said anticipating the PBA’s role in the national team, Reyes has submitted options and a budget to prepare for the July competition which is the continental Olympic qualifier.

"Chot is ready to name 14 players for the Asian championships," said Eala. "The SEABA (Southeast Asian Basketball Association) tournament is hanging. That will be held in the second week of May in Thailand. We’re trying to find out if we can host it instead."

The PBA’s second conference ends July 3 at the latest, giving the national team 25 days to train for the Asian championships.

"Chot’s options include pulling out players during the conference for twice a week practices and playing in pocket tournaments on off-days," said Eala. "We’re studying how PBA teams can lend players to the national team with the least disruption."

full battle gear
02-12-2007, 11:45 AM
SBP-BAP, PBA meet on RP team
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/12/2007

The PBA board of governors is taking into consideration its commitment to the fans and to member teams as it looks for the best way to handle the country’s participation in the coming Southeast Asia Basketball Association championship.

BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny Pangilinan meets PBA board chair Ricky Vargas, commissioner Noli Eala, San Miguel Corp.’s Robert Non and national coach Chot Reyes this afternoon to discuss the formation of the RP team for the SEABA joust.

"The best deal is to get SEABA held here. If it’s done, it’s easy to manage the schedules of both SEABA and the PBA second conference," said Non of RP team corporate sponsor San Miguel.

The PBA faces some problems if the SEABA is held as scheduled in Kuala Lumpur in May. That’s among the concerns to be tackled by Pangilinan, Vargas, Eala, Non and Reyes in their meeting at 6 p.m. at the PLDT office in Makati.

Under the BAP-SBP charter, the PBA is only tasked to handle the RP team’s participation in Asian-level tourneys and up. But there is a strong clamor for the pro league to immediately form the all-pro national team now with the close proximity of the FIBA-Asia championship, which is the regional qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Among the options proposed by Reyes for SEABA is an all-pro team or a team featuring six pros and six promising amateurs.

"The PBA board we’ll approve the most acceptable. But first, they have to make sure that the team will win," said PBA governor Ely Capacio.

What will be agreed upon in today’s meeting is subject to the approval of the PBA board which is set to have its own meeting in the last week of the month.

full battle gear
02-14-2007, 10:37 AM
Eala: All pro-team for Seaba event mulled

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 02:26am (Mla time) 02/14/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Pressed for time, the BAP-Samahang Basketbol Ng Pilipinas might settle for an all-professional squad to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championships.

Though no definite agreement has been reached on the formation of the national team to the Kuala Lumpur joust in May, all indications point to that direction after the meeting among the country’s top basketball chiefs Monday night.

Philippine Basketball Association commissioner and BAP-SBP spokesman Noli Eala said sending a PBA-backed team is one of the top options being considered to boost the national squad’s comeback stint in the international scene.

Under the BAP-SBP charter, a five-man committee composed of three directors from the collegiate sector and two from the commercial sector will have the sole authority to form the team for the Seaba.

“But because of the less-ideal situation, everybody is biased towards putting the best team now,” said Eala, who attended the top-level meeting at the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. office in Makati City.

BAP-SBP president Manny V. Pangilinan presided over the meeting that was supposed to tackle the composition of the national team for two coming tournaments critical to the country’s bid to be in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

But the group, which also included PBA chair Ricky Vargas, national coach Chot Reyes and San Miguel Corp. chief of basketball operations Robert Non, deferred its decision pending the formation of the selection committee.

Pangilinan will convene the BAP-SBP board to name the five-man committee, which could include Bernie Atienza, Junjun Capistrano, Fritz Gaston and Christian Tan from the collegiate sector.

The list would also include BAP-SBP directors Lito Alvarez, Chino Trinidad, Michele Lhuillier and Wilson Young from the commercial sector.

“In the situation where we’re in right now, the Seaba can be used as a part of the training for the team going to the FIBA-Asia,” said Eala. “It’s an ideal setup.”

full battle gear
02-14-2007, 10:38 AM
RP all-pro team for SEABA likely
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/14/2007

The Philippine Basketball Association is likely to heed the clamor to send an all-pro team to the coming SEABA championship although the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas has yet to make a final decision on the matter pending a conference of the BAP-SBP selection committee.

After a meeting with the PBA group Monday night, BAP-SBP president Manny Pangilinan is convening the BAP-SBP board members representing school and commercial sectors in a separate meeting today.

The group, composed of PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad, Michel Lhuillier, Wilson Young, Lito Alvarez, Bernie Atienza, Junjun Capistrano, Fritz Gaston and Christian Tan, is to name five persons who will seat in the selection committee, which will then chart the course of action for SEABA.

However, all indications point to the immediate formation of an all-pro team with the proximity, not only of the SEABA joust, but also the FIBA-Asia championship, which serves as the regional qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

"Under the BAP-SBP charter, the five-man selection committee is the authority in charting the course of action for SEABA and the Southeast Asian Games. But because of the non-ideal situation, everybody wants to put together the best team now," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"In the situation where we’re in right now, the SEABA can be used as part of the training for the team going to FIBA-Asia. It’s an ideal setup," Eala added.

Eala, however, stressed the BAP-SBP leadership will consider all options in a bid to come up with an impressive performance by the national team upon its return to international play.

The Philippine Olympic Committee looks poised to give its recognition to BAP-SBP in its special meeting Friday. The International Basketball Federation has said it would lift its suspension of the country as soon as BAP-SBP gets its POC accreditation.

full battle gear
02-14-2007, 10:41 AM
Pro team for SEABA eyed

By WAYLON GALVEZ
www.mb.com.ph


AN ALL-pro team to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championship?

Possible.

While forming the national team to the SEABA, according to the constitution and bylaws of the SBP, is a joint responsibility of commercial and collegiate sectors, all indications point to the immediate formation of the national team made up of PBA players.

One reason is the proximity of the SEABA tournament with the FIBA-Asia championship, the qualifying meet for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

"Under the BAP-SBP charter, the five-man selection committee is the authority in charting the course of action for SEABA and the Southeast Asian Games. But because of the non-ideal situation, everybody is biased towards putting together the best team now," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

SBP President Manny V. Pangilinan met with Eala, coach Chot Reyes, head of the national training pool, PBA Chairman and SBP vice chairman Ricky Vargas and San Miguel Corp. representative Robert Non Monday night at the PLDT office.

Pangilinan deferred making a decision on forming the RP team to the SEABA, which will be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia this May. Instead he will convene next week the BAP-SBP board members representing school and commercial sectors to choose five men for the selection committee.

The members could come from PBL Commissioner Chino Trinidad, Michel Lhuillier, Wilson Young, Lito Alvarez, Bernie Atienza, Junjun Capistrano, Fritz Gaston and Christian Tan.

While the commercial and collegiate sectors will handle the formation of the RP team for the SEABA, Southeast Asian Games and the Asian Games, the PBA will take care of the FIBA-Asia tournaments including qualifying meets for the Olympics and World Championships.

With five months to prepare for the FIBA-Asia in Saitama, Japan, Reyes, the San Miguel Beer mentor, is suggesting to form the team now and train them all the way through the Olympic qualifier.

Reyes plans to make the SEABA an integral part in preparing for the FIBA-Asia championship.

"In the situation where we’re in right now, the SEABA can be used as part of the training for the team going to FIBA-Asia. It’s an ideal setup," Eala added.

Eala said the BAP-SBP leadership is considering options in a bid to come up with an impressive performance in its return to international play now that the lifting of FIBA suspension on the country is imminent following the Unity Congress of the SBP.

The congress culminates the Tokyo communiqué signed by the Basketball Association of the Philippines and Pilipinas Basketball last Aug. 28 in Tokyo.

AnthonyServinio
02-15-2007, 02:33 AM
I believe that the group is pushing for Team A in the SEABA qualifiers this May. If that happens, expect Team Pilipinas to sweep the tournament beating the likes of Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore by at least 20 points and the other countries by at least 40 points.

The Philippines is also bidding to wrest the hosting rights from Malaysia.

Sad to say, with this possible scenario of daily blowouts in mind then the best thing to do is to have the tournament outside of Metro Manila, most probably in Cebu or Cagayan de Oro City.

I believe that Metro Manila fans will just tire and get bored seeing the PBA All-Stars massacre their opponents and shy away from the games. Just take the case of the last FIBA-Asia Champions Cup held here . . . it was a flop attendance-wise!

Hold the games at the New Cebu Coliseum or the Xavier University Gym and be rewarded with SRO paying crowds daily! The people won't mind the blowouts as long as they see their PBA idols in person!

pachador
02-15-2007, 02:38 AM
maayo kana na idea da. ka pachada kaayo ! didto na sa dakbayan ning cagayan de oro.



* * *I believe that the group is pushing for Team A in the SEABA qualifiers this May.* If that happens, expect Team Pilipinas to sweep the tournament beating the likes of Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore by at least 20 points and the other countries by at least 40 points.

* * *The Philippines is also bidding to wrest the hosting rights from Malaysia.

* * *Sad to say, with this possible scenario of daily blowouts in mind then the best thing to do is to have the tournament outside of Metro Manila, most probably in Cebu or Cagayan de Oro City.

* * *I believe that Metro Manila fans will just tire and get bored seeing the PBA All-Stars massacre their opponents and shy away from the games.* Just take the case of the last FIBA-Asia Champions Cup held here . . . it was a flop attendance-wise!

* * *Hold the games at the New Cebu Coliseum or the Xavier University Gym and be rewarded with SRO paying crowds daily!* The people won't mind the blowouts as long as they see their PBA idols in person!

AnthonyServinio
02-15-2007, 03:07 AM
maayo kana na idea da. ka pachada kaayo ! didto na sa dakbayan ning cagayan de oro.



* * *I believe that the group is pushing for Team A in the SEABA qualifiers this May.* If that happens, expect Team Pilipinas to sweep the tournament beating the likes of Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore by at least 20 points and the other countries by at least 40 points.

* * *The Philippines is also bidding to wrest the hosting rights from Malaysia.

* * *Sad to say, with this possible scenario of daily blowouts in mind then the best thing to do is to have the tournament outside of Metro Manila, most probably in Cebu or Cagayan de Oro City.

* * *I believe that Metro Manila fans will just tire and get bored seeing the PBA All-Stars massacre their opponents and shy away from the games.* Just take the case of the last FIBA-Asia Champions Cup held here . . . it was a flop attendance-wise!

* * *Hold the games at the New Cebu Coliseum or the Xavier University Gym and be rewarded with SRO paying crowds daily!* The people won't mind the blowouts as long as they see their PBA idols in person!


* * *PBA Commissioner Noli Eala was very amazed at how Gov. Oscar S. Moreno and the Provincial Government of Misamis Oriental successfully hosted the 2006 PBA All-Star Game that he would not hesitate to have more PBA provincial games in the province.

* * *Meanwhile, Cebu City is still on a high after successfully hosting the ASEAN Summit.* Now with the infrastructure and facilities used during the Summit still in place, it would be easy for Cebu to host the SEABA.* By the way, Cebu already has experience hosting international basketball tournaments, an advantage it has over Cagayan de Oro.

* * *As far as venue is concerned, I think the venues in Cebu and Cagayan de Oro have the advantage in terms of capacity over the MABA Stadium in Kuala Lumpur (the likely venue unless they decide to use the modern Putri Stadium beside the National Stadium).* The Cebu Coliseum may be quickly spruced up like what happened when it hosted some events in the 2005 Philippine SEA Games.

pachador
02-15-2007, 03:22 AM
Anthony,

bay, when you have time, can you make an article on eman samigue? more specifically, i would like to know if his recent 6 week illness will have a permanent effect on his progress? or is it just a temporary setback.. i heard he works-out at the Eclipse gym in mabini diha sa manila. salamat bay !

full battle gear
02-15-2007, 11:23 AM
Trinidad heads panel tasked to form RP team for Seaba

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 02:17am (Mla time) 02/15/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Chino Trinidad, the commissioner of the Philippine Basketball League, will head the five-man committee tasked by the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas to form a national team for the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championships.

Trinidad, one of the representatives of the commercial sector in the 25-man board of trustees of the organization, will have Christian Tan, Wilson Young, Michele Lhuillier and Junjun Capistrano as members in the committee.

Trinidad said the group has scheduled a meeting with Chot Reyes on Thursday to get an overview of the program the national coach has drawn up for the Seaba campaign of the team tentatively set in Kuala Lumpur three months from now.

Winning the Seaba is the country’s passport to the FIBA-Asia championships in Saitama, Japan to be held in July where two slots are up for grabs for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Should Reyes meet the expectations of the committee on Thursday, Trinidad said the San Miguel Beer coach in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) would be given blanket authority to form the team.

Whether professional or amateur, the composition of the team will hinge on the decision of the five-man committee, which is mandated by the BAP-SBP hierarchy to either accept or reject the proposal of Reyes.

Reyes earlier indicated that the country should send a team made up of PBA stars in the Seaba so that the Nationals would have already reached peak form when it competes in the FIBA-Asia championships.

Under the constitution and by-laws of the BAP-SBP, lesser tournaments, like the Seaba and the Southeast Asian Games, will be the responsibility of a five-man committee composed of three directors from the collegiate sector and two from the commercial sector.

Elite tournaments such as the FIBA-Asia, Asian Games, World Championships and the Olympics will fall under the jurisdiction of the professional sector, the PBA in particular.

The Philippine Olympic Committee executive board will go through the formality of sifting through the documents submitted by the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas on Thursday before calling a general assembly Friday to decide on the application for membership of the country’s new cage body.

full battle gear
02-15-2007, 11:28 AM
Reyes named SEABA coach
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/15/2007

Chot Reyes has been tasked to form the national team to the forthcoming Southeast Asia Basketball Association (SEABA) championship.

PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad, named chairman of the five-man selection committee, has called on Reyes to brief the committee on his program for the RP team in a meeting today at 2 p.m. at the PBL office in Pasig.

Others named to the selection committee were Lito Alvarez, Junjun Capistrano, Christian Tan and Wilson Young.

Due to the proximity of the SEABA joust, the majority of the committee has expressed their inclination to tap Reyes and his all-pro team for the job. Tan earlier suggested Boyzie Zamar to field his own team for SEABA.

With the majority vote, Trinidad and company are likely to formalize Reyes’ appointment as head coach of the national team after their meeting this afternoon.

full battle gear
02-16-2007, 11:41 AM
Reyes as RP cage team coach to Seaba ‘not a done deal’

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 03:10am (Mla time) 02/16/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Chot Reyes is the top contender, but the head coaching job of the national team to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) championships won’t be handed to him on a silver platter.

Like anybody else, the national coach has to pass through the scrutiny of the selection committee tasked by the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas to choose who will be the coach of Team Philippines for the event slated in May in Kuala Lumpur.

Philippine Basketball League commissioner Chino Trinidad, chair of the five-man selection committee, said the committee was supposed to meet with Reyes Thursday but the meeting was moved to Monday next week.

Trinidad said the committee would like to hear first the programs that Reyes has drawn up for the Seaba-bound team.

“It’s not a done deal yet,” said Trinidad. “We’re just giving coach Chot the opportunity to present his program. He still needs to satisfy the members of the committee.”

The committee, which also counts Wilson Young, Christian Tan, Lito Alvarez and Jun-Jun Capistrano as members, has also opened the Seaba coaching portfolio to other aspirants.

“We have to go through the process. Since Chot is the front-runner and we don’t have any candidates yet, we’ll start with him.”

Trinidad, however, stressed that the coach would have blanket authority on the formation of the team.

“If he feels forming a team made up of PBA (Philippine Basketball Association) players, amateurs or a mixture of both, it’s up to him,” said Trinidad.

full battle gear
02-16-2007, 11:50 AM
PBA board tackles RP 5 stint in SEABA

The Philippine Star 02/16/2007

The PBA board of governors is holding a special meeting this afternoon to discuss the national team’s participation in the Southeast Asia Basketball Association (SEABA) championship following the appointment of Chot Reyes as coach of the squad.

Keen on helping the Philippines make a strong impact in its return to international play, the PBA board will study options to assist the team without disrupting the schedule of the pro league.

Despite being set for only five days in May, the SEABA joust is in conflict the schedule of the PBA second conference.

BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny Pangilinan, PBA chairman Ricky Vargas and commissioner Noli Eala were inclined to approve Reyes’ suggestion to field in SEABA the same squad that will be sent to the FIBA-Asia championship in July.

Though also open to an all-amateur squad or a mix of six pros and six amateurs for SEABA, Reyes said the most ideal setup is to form the best team now and train them all the way to the FIBA-Asia championship which is the qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Asian Games.

Part of today’s discussion is Reyes’ proposal on the training program.

Most likely, Reyes would again be pulled out of his PBA team so he could concentrate on the RP team.

A big question is whether ballclubs would also be willing to loan their stars to the national team during the second conference.

With his original program disrupted by FIBA’s suspension of the Philippines, Reyes wants to make up for lost time. Apparently, his suggestion is for the RP team to compete in all international tourneys scheduled between now and July.

The BAP-SBP leadership insists their main goal is for the country to qualify for the Olympics next year.

Meanwhile, Reyes’ scheduled meeting with PBL chief Chino Trinidad yesterday didn’t push through but the two cage officials did talk over the phone and agreed to meet on Monday.

Trinidad has called on Reyes to brief the committee on his program for the RP squad. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
02-17-2007, 09:48 AM
Pro players to get PBA leave to train for RP 5

The Philippine Star 02/17/2007

Players chosen to play for the national team will be pulled out of their respective PBA teams in the second conference to let them fully concentrate on their training and give the country a good shot at qualifying for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The PBA board of governors made this decision in a special meeting yesterday held specifically to discuss the program for the national team in view of the impending reinstatement of the Philippines in international play.

To make up for lost time, the PBA board also decided to allow its players to play in the forthcoming SEABA championship, which serves as the elimination for the FIBA-Asia championship.

With the proximity of both the SEABA and FIBA-Asia jousts, PBA commissioner Noli Eala said they are likely to announce the composition of the all-pro national team in the next few days.

"The position taken by the PBA is that there’s no greater sacrifice than sacrifice for the national cause. The board believes this is our best opportunity (to qualify for the Olympics) and we want to give it the best shot," said Eala.

"We’re confident fans will be supportive of our efforts to form the strongest possible team for this quest," Eala added.

Curiously, the PBA made the decision while the BAP-SBP selection committee had yet to formally announce the appointment of Chot Reyes as the coach of the team.

"We looked at the BAP-SBP by-laws and we saw a provision allowing the pro sector to manage the team for the qualifier for the FIBA-Asia championship. Since SEABA is the FIBA-Asia qualifier, the PBA is empowered to handle the formation of the national team," said Eala. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
02-18-2007, 10:46 AM
PBA board: Chot’s the man

League gives Reyes fresh mandate as nat’l coach
By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 06:55am (Mla time) 02/18/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Back to the original script.

Chot Reyes yesterday got a fresh mandate from the Philippine Basketball Association’s board of governors to select the players and handle the RP Team when it returns to the international scene via two major tournaments this year.

The firebrand San Miguel coach, whose appointment to the same job two years ago actually triggered the leadership squabble in the sport, will mentor what could be an all-PBA team to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) championship this summer.

Reyes’ appointment still needs to be formalized by the search committee formed by the Basketball Association of the Philippines-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (BAP-SBP) but PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad, the chair of that committee sees little problem with naming the San Miguel mentor.

“After all the work he has put in to form the program that was suspended only by the controversy, I can’t see any reason why the committee would not move towards that direction,” said Trinidad.

Reyes will also call the shots when the country’s best and brightest see action in the Fiba-Asia Olympic qualifier in August.

The Seaba tournament is actually a qualifying event for the Fiba-Asia Olympic qualifier. But the Philippines traditionally just has too much talent not to win that event scheduled in May in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

It was also in the Seaba tournament in Malaysia in 2005 that the Philippines’ problems in the international basketball scene started to surface, when a Basketball Association of the Philippines-endorsed RP Team was refused a slot in the tournament after the Philippine Olympic Committee had suspended the BAP.

So much has happened to RP basketball since then, with the BAP being expelled from the local Olympic movement by the General Assembly, the country being inactive internationally for the last two years and the creation of a new basketball body.

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas-Basketball Association of the Philippines is now the new cage body after getting conditional recognition from the POC recently. It is just awaiting reinstatement into the international federation (Fiba).

The BAP had questioned Reyes’ appointment then, batting for its ward, Boysie Zamar, to be able to call the shots for that Seaba team.

Problems between the POC and the BAP arose after that, which eventually led to the suspension and then expulsion of the age-old basketball body and the trouble that shamed the country internationally.

Meanwhile, the PBA has also formed a management committee headed by league chairman Ricky Vargas of Talk `N Text, to look after the all-pro team.

PBA Commissioner Noli Eala, Red Bull team manager Tony Chua and either the governor or alternate governor of San Miguel are the members of the committee, which will also decide whatever budget proposal Reyes will come up with.

The first time he handled the RP team in 2005, Reyes proposed a budget of P140 million.

Once the men’s squad is formed, training for the SEABA tournament starts as soon as possible.

pachador
02-19-2007, 06:03 AM
as you guys know, the PBA approved na for 14 players to be pulled out from their teams and will not play in the imports conferences. The question now is , saan kukuha ng players ang PBA na temporary na replacements sa 14 magic players? the news below is the answer. It is also a very unique solution . matalino ang nag-isip nito:

PBA approves apprenticeship program

By WAYLON GALVEZ
www.mb.com.ph


TOP AMATEUR players will get the chance to experience what it is like in the professional loop when the PBA opens its second conference.

This developed after the PBA Board of Governors approved the proposed Apprenticeship Program which will allow teams which will loan players to the national squad to tap the services of cagers from the commercial and collegiate leagues through a Drafting system.

It was endorsed after the league’s Board consented to the lending of PBA players to the RP men’s team set to compete in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championships in May and the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifying in August.

The 12 players and two alternates who will be named as part of the national team will no longer be allowed to see action in the import-flavored Fiesta Cup set March 4.

Affected teams are then given the go-signal to get replacements from amateur leagues to complete their rosters.

Ken Bono, the reigning UAAP Most Valuable Player (MVP) from Adamson, PBL Silver Cup champion Harbour Centre’s JC Intal, and Jason Castro, the newest PBL MVP, are just some of the top prospects expected to make it big in the PBA in the coming years.

"The program will allow amateur players to experience and learn the ropes in the pro league," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala. "It’s like an ‘on-the-job training’ for them, while at the same time, giving the fans a preview of the possible talent that will join the PBA Rookie Draft in the future."

Amateur players who will be drafted will be well compensated, getting a maximum R40,000 monthly educational assistance, medical insurance coverage and perks and bonuses.

However, only players who have never applied in the PBA Draft and currently playing or have played in the PBL or any other commercial leagues are eligible to sign up.

The order of drafting will be determined by the contribution of teams to the RP squad, with the ballclub that has the most number of players on loan getting to draft first and the one with the least players chosen drafting last.

In the event two or more teams contribute the same number of players to national cause, their rankings in the 2006-07 Philippine Cup will determine their drafting order, according to Eala.

Teams which did not contribute a player to the RP pool are not allowed to participate in the program.

"The Apprenticeship Program will also provide new look and attraction to the Fiesta Cup," added Eala.

Players under the program are allowed to play in the Fiesta Cup only during off season in their respective amateur leagues. "Otherwise, they will be pulled out from their mother teams in the PBA once competition in their leagues begins."

A team automatically owns the right on the player it drafted for the duration of the tournament, and cannot play for any other PBA squad or be traded during the period of apprenticeship, added the league commissioner.

Edited to include credit of news article.

oca
02-19-2007, 09:16 AM
This Apprentiship is a gem of a gimmick to compensate for the absence of the established PBA stars serving in the NT.

No one should expect that these apprentices will fill the competitive vacuum. But yes, they will generate interest and capture the the attention of the PBA fans and even those who don't follow the league religiously.

I think this gimmick will be enough to cushion losses in gate receitps and TV viewership. I am sure maraming non-PBA regulars ang susubaybayan ang kanilang college idols na mada-draft.

Tanong, how will the PBA compensate the PBL teams with whom these players have existing contracts? Alam naman natin na pareho ng kalendaryo ang mga ito.

Also, in the event this Apprenticeship becomes a regular thing, how will these affect the schools/varsity teams whose players will be drafted; taken in the light of the fact that the National-Intercollegiate or a similar event will be strengthened/ launched as a consequence of the advent of a new basketball governing body.

Just keep in mind, guys, the PBA is not your all-benevolent association of corporations. This Apprenticeship is their way of addressing the historically proven dip in attendance and viewership.

Lahat ng bagay ay may downside, dito nga lang, IMO, ang downside ay hindi PBA ang tatamaan.

full battle gear
02-19-2007, 11:02 AM
Why go to the SEABA?
THE GAME OF MY LIFE By Bill Velasco
The Philippine Star 02/19/2007

The formal confirmation of Chot Reyes as head coach of Team Philippines this week is pretty much the green light for the reunion of the national team. The basketball community is looking forward to the announcement of the fourteen-man line-up, the practices, and our eventual conquest of the SEABA. Of course, now that we have the best players available, hope is high that we will be able to conquer at the FIBA-Asia tournament in Japan and make it back to the Olympics for the first time since 1972.

But wait. Upon further reflection, let’s raise the question: why are we sending PBA players to the SEABA?

Here is the chicken-and-egg situation. We need to place in the top two of the SEABA to qualify for the Saitama tournament. At the same time, there is very limited time to prepare for both events. But also, the SEABA is such a low-caliber competition that even a middling college team could sweep the field with minor difficulty.

If you recall, the last time a Philippine team flew to the SEABA (which was held in Kuala Lumpur), it was the exact same time that the Philippine Olympic Committee expelled the Basketball Association of the Philippines. The notice was sent to the organizers, and when the RP-Cebuana Lhuillier team arrived in KL, they learned they were not going to be allowed to play. A near-riot ensued at the Malaysian Basketball Association (MABA) gym’s ticket office when Filipinos who had traveled from all over Malaysia realized they had made the trip for nothing. The players were stranded because Philippine Airlines shared some flights with Malaysian Airlines planes, and they couldn’t accommodate such a big group. Needless to say, that team – made up of players like KG Canaleta, Pep Moore, Dennis Madrid and other former PBL and college players – would have easily won.

Surveying the current field, the only teams that have even the vaguest chance of putting up token resistance would be Indonesia (coached by former RP Cebuana Lhuillier mentor Boycie Zamar), or Singapore (if they deploy the naturalized mainland Chinese who have been training with their national team). A PBA selection would definitely be overkill.

So what do we do? Obviously, the easiest solution would be to send the actual national team to both jousts. We would handily win the SEABA and make it to the FIBA-Asia qualifier, and the country would definitely look good and feel good doing it. There would be celebration: the Philippines is back. But aside from cementing our entry to the Asian-level competition, what would it achieve?

One suggestion would be to also play tune-up games against some of the actual contenders we will be facing in Japan. Taiwan has a younger, stronger team, and hides many of its players until actual international competitions. They would be a big test for us, and the scouting would help tremendously. Korea will definitely be another hurdle, and we would want some measure of revenge for derailing us from medal contention in the Asian Games in Busan. They were in good condition when they faced the Philippines then, and it would be a big emotional boost to beat them, even in a tune-up game, and more so if it’s on their home floor. Of course, if budget were no problem, what would serve us best would be to play against some European squads. Challenging the passing and shooting alone would be a big learning experience, and we would be the wiser for it. And it would raise the bar above even most Asian teams.

Scouting is going to be even more critical for the short run, since time is limited. We can’t afford any surprises, since the pressure will be to win all our games in Japan. Any unexpectedly tough opponents could prove disastrous. The bracketing alone will already be a major factor.

One thing is for sure, the rules will be the biggest adjustment. The pace of the shorter international game will be another consideration. And we will have to have quite a few shooters on our team to compensate for our lack of size against other Asian teams. As former Boston Celtic Tom Heinsohn once said, "Size is only important ten feet from the basket." European-style ball movement would be a big help then.

There is supreme confidence in the coaching staff of the national team, and the feeling of unity will make full cooperation smooth. But it cannot be denied that pressure is at an all-time high. Then again, this is our best and only shot at returning to the Olympic Games.

pachador
02-19-2007, 12:44 PM
i dont think its a gimmick because logically the missing 14 players need to be replaced temporarily, siempre , where else is the PBA going to find temporary replacments except from the other leagues ? di ba? the other leagues in turn will get replacement players from lesser leagues in the food chain so to speak. this way, all leagues make a sacrifice and contribute to the national team directly(PBA) or indirectly(PBL, NBV, MVBA, etc thru the apprentice program).
of course there is no doubt that the apprentices are no way as good as the magic 14 players they are temporarily replacing, but then, the bottom-line is the PBA teams need filler or substitutes. Alangan naman ay kukuka sila ng imports bilang substitutes sa mga 14 na players na to? its not only expensive but it will create even bigger controversy and siempre, you can't expect the PBA teams to play with depleted line-ups, that would not make sense either.
The apprenticeship program will also improve the skills and experience of younger players which will serve them well when they play in the national youth teams or in the future when they get drafted....




This Apprentiship is a gem of a gimmick to compensate for the absence of the established PBA stars serving in the NT.

No one should expect that these apprentices will fill the competitive vacuum. But yes, they will generate interest and capture the the attention of the PBA fans and even those who don't follow the league religiously.

I think this gimmick will be enough to cushion losses in gate receitps and TV viewership. I am sure maraming non-PBA regulars ang susubaybayan ang kanilang college idols na mada-draft.

Tanong, how will the PBA compensate the PBL teams with whom these players have existing contracts? Alam naman natin na pareho ng kalendaryo ang mga ito.

Also, in the event this Apprenticeship becomes a regular thing, how will these affect the schools/varsity teams whose players will be drafted; taken in the light of the fact that the National-Intercollegiate or a similar event will be strengthened/ launched as a consequence of the advent of a new basketball governing body.

Just keep in mind, guys, the PBA is not your all-benevolent association of corporations. This Apprenticeship is their way of addressing the historically proven dip in attendance and viewership.

Lahat ng bagay ay may downside, dito nga lang, IMO, ang downside ay hindi PBA ang tatamaan.

oca
02-19-2007, 01:52 PM
i dont think its a gimmick because logically the missing 14 players need to be replaced temporarily, siempre , where else is the PBA going to find temporary replacments except from the other leagues ? di ba? the other leagues in turn will get replacement players from lesser leagues in the food chain so to speak. this way, all leagues make a sacrifice and contribute to the national team directly(PBA) or indirectly(PBL, NBV, MVBA, etc thru the apprentice program).
of course there is no doubt that the apprentices are no way as good as the magic 14 players they are temporarily replacing, but then,* the bottom-line is the PBA teams need filler or substitutes. Alangan naman ay kukuka sila ng imports bilang substitutes sa mga 14 na players na* to? its not only expensive but it will create even bigger controversy and siempre, you can't expect the PBA teams to play with depleted line-ups, that would not make sense either.
The apprenticeship program will also improve the skills and experience of younger players which will serve them well when they play in the national youth teams or in the future when they get drafted....



Huwag nating kalimutan na liban sa mga players na nakaupo sa bench bawat laro, all these PBA teams have reserve and practice players.

Di ba pagkakataon na masulit yung bayad ng mga iyan?

For 2 or 3 years now, the PBA annual draft has been limited to 2 rounds. We are aware of players who were good enough to be drafted but there are just not enough teams to accomodate them. So, why not look at the list of free agents?

Kung players lang ang kailangan maraming naghihintay. But why come up with something w/c is limited to players who have never applied for the draft (hence- apprenticeship)?

Because they want to CASH IN on the POPULARITY of the collegiate stars.

pachador
02-19-2007, 11:14 PM
Ah, I forgot about those practice players and free agents. well, of course, if that is the case bakit nga ba hindi itong mga free agents? you have a very strong case here. Well, the only so-called "excuse" i can think of can be seen also in that news article. sabi daw , hindi puede yung nag-apply before sa PBA draft baka siguro , the PBA does not want to worry or make insecure the magic 14 players na-papalitan sila even though the chance that will happen is remote so the sure-fire way to assuage any bit of worries or insecurities is to get those apprentice players instead of those free agents or previous PBA draftee applicants. The advantage pa of this collegiate players like you said is their popularity, and hence its also a marketing gimmick at the same time for the PBA........
by the way as a side comment, i read a news article about plans of the PBL: ang plano daw ng PBL is to limit player age to 26 ba yun or 28 so bale yung mga tapos na sa college at matanda na ay hindi na puede sa PBL . the PBL's reason daw is to give younger players a chance to get the PBL experience. yung mga matanda sa PBL if they still dont make it to the PBA by 26 or 28 bale they have to leave the PBL and join the other leagues such as NBC, and give away to younger blood. This is very darwinian or survival of the fittest, but at the same time its one more way to improve competition discover new players and improve the skills of this new players. This will also improve the chances of home-grown players compete against fil-am players in getting PBA slots( the fil-ams themselves come from the american survival of the fittest system). our neighboring asian countries are improving all the time and we cannot afford to be compacent, we need to have razor-sharp players.
para sa akin, the lesson here, is that a player should not depend on his basketball skills because he will not only be forever young but also there is only a limited number of slots available in any of the leagues. any money he earns he should use to finish his college degree or start a business because he cannot play foreever or he may simply not be good enough.






i dont think its a gimmick because logically the missing 14 players need to be replaced temporarily, siempre , where else is the PBA going to find temporary replacments except from the other leagues ? di ba? the other leagues in turn will get replacement players from lesser leagues in the food chain so to speak. this way, all leagues make a sacrifice and contribute to the national team directly(PBA) or indirectly(PBL, NBV, MVBA, etc thru the apprentice program).
of course there is no doubt that the apprentices are no way as good as the magic 14 players they are temporarily replacing, but then,* the bottom-line is the PBA teams need filler or substitutes. Alangan naman ay kukuka sila ng imports bilang substitutes sa mga 14 na players na* to? its not only expensive but it will create even bigger controversy and siempre, you can't expect the PBA teams to play with depleted line-ups, that would not make sense either.
The apprenticeship program will also improve the skills and experience of younger players which will serve them well when they play in the national youth teams or in the future when they get drafted....



Huwag nating kalimutan na liban sa mga players na nakaupo sa bench bawat laro, all these PBA teams have reserve and practice players.

Di ba pagkakataon na masulit yung bayad ng mga iyan?

For 2 or 3 years now, the PBA annual draft has been limited to 2 rounds. We are aware of players who were good enough to be drafted but there are just not enough teams to accomodate them. So, why not look at the list of free agents?

Kung players lang ang kailangan maraming naghihintay. But why come up with something w/c is limited to players who have never applied for the draft (hence- apprenticeship)?

Because they want to CASH IN on the POPULARITY of the collegiate stars.

pachador
02-19-2007, 11:59 PM
more news : apprenticeship program expanded:
PBA expands apprentices’ pool

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

THIS is one good news for those talents aching to take part in the PBA’s "Apprenticeship Program."

League commissioner Noli Eala yesterday said he is extending his invitation to all interested players who are not part of the major amateur commercial leagues, namely the PBL, NBC and the Mindanao-Visayas Basketball Association (MVBA).

"I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of gifted players out there who are interested to avail of this once-in a-lifetime opportunity. If they wish to experience how it is to play in the pros this is their chance," Eala said.

Eala said players who are not involved in the PBL, NBC and the MVBA can submit their application not later than Feb. 22 at the PBA office located at 186 E. Rodriguez Jr. Ave., Libis Quezon City.

Interested parties must attach in their application forms a clearance from their mother ball club and/or athletic sports association allowing them to play for the "Apprentice Program" of the PBA.

For those who are active players of the PBL, NBC and MVBA, Eala said the PBA will be sending a letter to the commissioners of these three leagues requesting them to identify who among their players are qualified for the program.

"We hope we could complete the roster within the week so we could go ahead with the drafting," Eala said.

He said the "Apprenticeship Draft" will be held on Feb. 27.

The PBA is implementing the program to cushion the impact that may be caused by the absence of the league’s stars, who will be selected to form the Philippine Team competing in the SEABA Championship in May and the FIBA-Olympic Qualifier in August.

The PBA board of governors unanimously agreed that all members of the RP Team will be barred from playing next conference.

Eala said those who will make it as replacement players will be well compensated, getting a maximum P40,000 monthly educational assistance, medical insurance coverage and perks and bonuses.

According to the PBA commissioner, the order of drafting will be determined by the contribution of teams to the RP squad. He said the team with the most number of players on loan will get the first crack in the draft and the team with the least players chosen drafting last.
In the event two or more teams contribute the same number of players, their rankings in the 2006-07 Philippine Cup determines their drafting order, Eala stressed. Teams that did not contribute a player to the RP pool are not allowed to participate in the apprentice draft.
"The Apprenticeship Program will also provide new look and attraction to the Fiesta Cup," said Eala of the Second Conference spiked by imports with a maximum height of 6-foot-6.

full battle gear
02-20-2007, 11:35 AM
CLEAN LIVING
Why RP should enter all-pro team to Seaba

By Manolo Iñigo
Inquirer
Last updated 05:57am (Mla time) 02/20/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippines should field an all-professional team in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championships if we want to put up a good fight.

If we don’t like to be the laughing stock of the whole world we must pick only Filipinos who truly love their country and not those who play the game only to fatten their pockets.

I still remember one interview with a Philippine Basketball Association superstar who said he won’t play for the country because he might be injured and risk his livelihood. What a shame.

Chino Trinidad, the commissioner of the Philippine Basketball League, who heads the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas selection committee tasked to form a national team for the Seaba championships, must know the task ahead is tough. Granting that the Filipinos hurdle the Seaba championships in May in Kuala Lumpur, they still have to play in the Olympic qualifier for the FIBA-Asia Championships to be held in Saitama, Japan, in July. The proximity of both tournaments needs the formation of a competitive team which could develop teamwork in a short time.

“The situation is far from ideal. We’ve got to have the greatest chance of qualifying and yet we’ve also got to take into account all the variables involved,” said Chot Reyes, one of the frontrunners to head the coaching job.

In Olympic basketball, the national team should accept the fact that tall players definitely have the advantage over their short opponents, putting the Filipinos -- who are not meant to be genetically tall -- at a great disadvantage. On record, the tallest Filipino player is Asi Taulava, who stands 6-foot-9, smaller than the other centers of China, in particular.

For example, since 1990 have we beaten China in basketball? In the last Asian Games, the national team, composed of PBA players, lost even to Kazakhstan in the medal race for the bronze. It became more pitiful because in the past, the Philippines is always assured of making an impact and, in most cases, bringing home a medal from a regional tournament of this level.

We are a basketball crazy country. Basketball survives on the huge income it generates from its many sponsors unlike the other sports associations which are not so lucky. The fate of most of these impoverished sports associations will remain unchanged in view of the prevailing economic situation.

full battle gear
02-20-2007, 11:36 AM
PBA to Chot Reyes: Name RP 5 within this week

Apprentice draft set
By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 02:38am (Mla time) 02/20/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine Basketball Association commissioner will ask league-backed national coach Chot Reyes to name the country’s roster for the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championships within the week to allow both the national team and the PBA ballclubs that will be affected by the selection to prepare early.

“I am optimistic that he can name the team by Friday this week,” said Eala, who was set to meet Reyes late Monday afternoon. “We will hold a press conference on Saturday to announce the team.”

The naming of the team hopes to achieve a two-fold task: It will allow the national squad to prepare early for the Seaba tilt slated May and it will also give PBA teams whose players will be drafted into the national squad a chance to reassess their lineup and take advantage of the “apprenticeship draft” the league is holding on Feb. 27.

The Seaba is the qualifier for the FIBA-Asia tilt scheduled later in the year, the tournament that will serve as the Asian qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The apprenticeship draft on the other hand, will allow teams to select amateur standouts to fill the spots that will be left vacant by those selected for national duty.

“The earlier direction of the board was to have the national team named by March 1,” Eala said. “But we deemed it better if the team was named earlier to give the national squad a chance to prepare and then allow the teams to study how they will use the apprenticeship draft.”

Candidates

Among the players touted to make the national squad are Talk ‘N Text stars Asi Taulava and Renren Ritualo, San Miguel gunners Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros and Ginebra standouts Mark Caguioa and Erik Menk.

The league opened the apprenticeship draft to all players, this time including those who are not part of any amateur commercial league, as was earlier prescribed.

“I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of gifted ball players out there who are interested to avail this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. If they wish to experience how it is to play in the pros, this is their chance,” Eala said in a statement sent to media offices Monday.

Eala said players who are not involved in any amateur commercial league like the Philippine Basketball League, the National Basketball Conference and the Mindanao-Visayas Basketball League can submit their application not later than Feb. 22 at the PBA office located at 186 E. Rodriguez Jr. Avenue in Libis, Quezon City.

Interested parties must attach in their application forms a clearance from their mother ball club and/or athletic sports association allowing them to play under the apprentice program of the PBA.

Apprentice program

Expected to take advantage of the apprentice program are standouts from the PBL, which just concluded its season, such as JC Intal, Ken Bono and Larry Rodriguez.

For those who are active players of the PBL, NBC and MVBA, Eala said the PBA will be sending a letter to the commissioners of these three leagues requesting them to identify who among their players are qualified for the “Apprentice Program”.

“We hope we could complete the roster within the week so we could go ahead with the drafting,” Eala said.

The PBA board of governors unanimously agreed that all members of the RP Team will be barred from playing in the next conference.

Compensation

Eala said those who will make it as replacement players will be well compensated, getting a maximum P40,000 monthly educational assistance, medical insurance coverage and perks and bonuses.

The order of drafting will be determined by the contribution of teams to the RP squad, making it imperative that Reyes names the team within the week.

In the event two or more teams contribute the same number of players, their rankings in the 2006-07 Philippine Cup determines their drafting order.

“The Apprenticeship Program will also provide new look and attraction to the Fiesta Cup,” said Eala of the import-laden tournament.

full battle gear
02-20-2007, 11:41 AM
Chosen 12 to be named soon
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 02/20/2007

National basketball team coach Chot Reyes is expected to name, possibly this week, the Chosen 12 who will wear the country’s colors starting in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup regional qualifiers on April 9 in Indonesia all the way to a possible stint in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Reyes met with PBA commissioner Noli Eala late yesterday afternoon to discuss timelines, schedules, budgets and the team composition. Reyes has up to March 1 to name the 12 players but will likely make the announcement this week.

"Coach Chot has started to talk to the candidates," said a source. "He wants to find out the extent of their commitment to play and sacrifice for the country. The plan is to name 12 players and pull them out of their PBA teams. There will be no alternates named because the whole PBA is the alternates pool."

In 2002, a 24-man national pool was formed for the Asian Games and it caused a major disruption in the PBA, leading to a 13 percent drop in revenues. This time, the focus will be only on 12 cagers. No tryouts will be necessary as Reyes has been observing the players in overseas tournaments the last two years.

The source said Reyes has zeroed in on eight shoo-ins and is still deciding on whom to tap for the four remaining slots.

The eight shoo-ins are reportedly Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and RenRen Ritualo of Talk ‘N’ Text, Jay-Jay Helterbrand and Rudy Hatfield of Barangay Ginebra, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer and Tony de la Cruz of Alaska.

Under consideration are Romel Adducul and Dorian Pena of San Miguel Beer, Eric Menk, Mark Caguioa and Rafi Reavis of Barangay Ginebra, Yancy de Ocampo of Talk ‘N’ Text, Kerby Raymundo and James Yap of Purefoods, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Willie Miller of Alaska, Enrico Villanueva of Red Bull, and Kelly Williams of Sta. Lucia Realty.

Choosing Taulava’s backup at center is causing Reyes sleepless nights, said the source.

"Eric’s health is a consideration because we don’t know if he can be 100 percent," continued the source. "Romel’s experience in international competitions is an advantage. Dorian and Rafi also can’t be overlooked. Coach Chot will probably consult other coaches before making up his mind."

Caguioa’s name surfaced even as he hasn’t played on any national team.

"Of course, coach Chot would love to have him but it’s important to determine if Mark wants to play for the national team," said the source. "Coach Chot will also evaluate if his style fits the brand of international play where the ball is always moving and players get equal opportunities."

The decision on the Chosen 12 will be made this week to give their mother teams enough lead time to adjust lineups in preparing for the next PBA conference starting March 4.

Once FIBA lifts the country’s suspension, the plan is for the national team to play in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup regional qualifiers starting April 9 in Indonesia, the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup on May 12-20 in Iran, the SEABA championships on May 24-28 in Bangkok and the FIBA-Asia Championships on July 28-Aug. 5 in Tokushima, Japan .

The team is also planning to play tune-up games in Korea, Europe and Australia.

The final training for the FIBA-Asia Championships may take the form of a four-team invitationals here in the second week of July with the national squad hosting the Guangdong Tigers of China, Chinese-Taipei and Korea . The Tigers are bannered by at least four Chinese national players including 7-foot NBA prospect Yi Jianlian.

full battle gear
02-22-2007, 11:50 AM
Eala insists Chot, pros SEABA-bound

The Philippine Star 02/22/2007

PBA commissioner Noli Eala stressed coach Chot Reyes and an all-pro team will represent the country in the SEABA championship, invoking a provision in the BAP-SBP by-laws giving the pro sector the jurisdiction over the formation of the RP team to the regional tourney this year.

Eala said they have informed BAP-SBP president Manny Pangilinan that the PBA is exercising its prerogative to handle the team to the SEABA joust slated in May.

The PBA commissioner said Reyes is to announce the composition of the team in a press conference on Saturday.

The Nationals will be pulled out of their mother teams in the PBA Fiesta Cup, allowing them to concentrate in their training for the team tasked to earn berth on the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Citing a provision in the BAP-SBP by-laws, Eala said the PBA is authorized to handle the formation, training and actual participation of the RP team to the coming SEABA event.

"Paraphrasing the article, it says the formation of the national team to the elite tourneys, including the FIBA-Asia championship which is the qualifier for the Olympics, and all qualifying tournaments for the elite championships shall be handled by the pro sector," Eala told The STAR.

"The only thing to be determined is whether the PBA is willing to do the job, and the PBA had decided to do it," Eala also said.

At the same time, Eala suggested the selection committee should focus on the team makeupfor Southeast Asian Games late this year.

"They’re tasked to form the team for the SEA Games and they should focus on that now," said Eala.

The selection committee, composed of PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad, Air21 president Lito Alvarez, Tanduay president Wilson Young, UAAP’s Junjun Capistrano and BAP’s Christian Tan, drew their own battle plan for the SEABA Monday.

They called on Reyes to appoint the person who will handle the national team. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
02-22-2007, 11:51 AM
Torturous interference
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 02/22/2007

If I were national basketball team coach Chot Reyes, I would be wondering why on earth I had to subject myself to scrutiny by a gang of BAP diehards posing as respectable members of a so-called selection committee in a meeting the other day.

In the BAP-SBP By-Laws, there’s a provision for a five-man selection committee to oversee the process of choosing the national coach and the players to represent the country in regional non-elite competitions.

But there’s a superseding provision empowering the professional sector, meaning the PBA, to decide on the coach and players in high-level tournaments such as the FIBA-Asia Championships, the World Championships and the Olympics and qualifying eliminators that lead to participation in those high-level contests.

The coming SEABA tournament (May in Bangkok) is a regional qualifier for the FIBA-Asia Championships in Tokushima in July. Because the SEABA tournament is a qualifier for an elite competition, the professional sector – not the selection committee – has the authority to choose the national coach and players for the meet.

How the selection committee managed to wiggle its way into a position of influence, or interference, is a mystery. Or was it a political accommodation since three of the five members come from the BAP?

Reyes has the unenviable task of bringing the Philippines back on the world basketball map. His ultimate goal is to qualify the national team for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Reyes has thought long and hard how to get the job done. He’s got a blueprint in mind and it starts with forming an all-pro national team to play in the SEABA tournament.

It’s irrelevant if the competition in SEABA will be weak for the Philippines. Reyes’ idea is to get the national team off and running, now. Dominating the SEABA would be a big boost in confidence and surely, a rousing start in the road to glory.

Unfortunately, there are some members in the selection committee who are out to undermine Reyes. They want somebody else to coach the national squad in the SEABA tournament. They want a "composite" team made up of six pros and six amateurs. Those suggestions would be fine if this coming SEABA tournament weren’t a crucial qualifier for the FIBA-Asia Championships.

If the Philippines played and fared creditably in the last FIBA-Asia Championships, there wouldn’t be a need to go through a qualifier because of an automatic seeding. But the reality is now, the coming SEABA tournament is vital in ensuring the country’s participation in the FIBA-Asia Championships. That’s because the Philippines was disqualified from playing in the last SEABA and FIBA-Asia Championships due to its FIBA suspension.

Two members of the selection committee batted for Reyes to coach an all-pro team in the SEABA tournament but were outvoted. The disappointing vote has raised the question – can the committee chairman veto the vote and elevate the issue to the BAP-SBP Board of Trustees?

And why was the selection committee convened in the first place, considering the professional sector has the authority to decide on the composition of the national team playing in a qualifier for a high-level tournament?

Reyes deserves all the support he can get in his mission. But he can certainly do without the kind of support that the selection committee is giving him.

The PBA is spearheading the Olympic crusade and with the backing of San Miguel Corp. and Philippine Long Distance Tel. Co., the national team will not be short-handed in resources.

The country’s basketball stakeholders owe a huge debt of gratitude to the PBA for taking steps and sacrificing its own interests for the bigger picture. If only because of that, all the stakeholders should rally around the PBA and support its initiatives to achieve the common goal.

The PBL’s rejection of the PBA’s proposed apprenticeship draft – an integral part in preserving the balance of the country’s basketball program – is not a sign of togetherness. If the goal of playing in the Olympics is achieved, all the stakeholders must be on the same page.

Unfortunately, the cracks in the BAP-SBP wall are now beginning to show and it’s a disheartening development.

full battle gear
02-22-2007, 11:53 AM
PBA wants an all-pro team to SEABA tourney

By Waylon Galvez
www.mb.com.ph


PHILIPPINE BASKETBALL Association Commissioner Noli Eala yesterday insisted that the league has the mantle of fielding an all-pro team to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championship in Kuala, Lumpur in May.

Eala cited a provision in the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas by-laws that states that the formation of the men’s national team to the SEABA is a function of the professional sector.

"The pro sector will handle the elite tournaments like the Olympics Games, World Championships and FIBA-Asia, as well as the regional qualifying tournaments for us to join these three events," Eala told the Bulletin.

This provision, according to Eala, is under Section 1, Article 13.

Although the SEABA is a regional meet, Eala clarified that it falls under the category of a qualifying tournament as the top two teams will represent the Southeast Asian region to the Olympic qualifying FIBA-Asia Championship.

The Philippines can now participate in all FIBA sanctioned meets after the world governing body for basketball lifted its two-year suspension yesterday.

Section 2, Article 13 of the same SBP by-laws, however, states that forming a national team to the SEABA will be jointly handled by commercial and collegiate sectors of the SBP, but it is subject to such applicable rules and regulations and accreditation requirements.

"This was the basis of the PBA board when it decided to send an all-pro team to the SEABA, which is a vital part in our preparation for the FIBA-Asia, and hopefully the Olympics," Eala said.

Eala said that he already informed SBP President Manny V. Pangilinan regarding this matter.

"The PBA is invoking to Mr. Pangilinan (this issue) because as far as we are concerned, the SEABA formation is not part of the commercial/collegiate sector, which will handle the regional events but not regional qualifying meets for elite tournaments," added Eala.

The other day, the five-man committee chaired by Philippine Basketball League (PBL) Commissioner Chino Trinidad decided to have a "composite team".

The "composite team" should have a minimum of six amateur players, to be reinforced by PBA players to the SEABA.

"The committee feels that this SEABA is too shallow for a team made up of pros. Before coming up with a decision, we consulted with all parties concerned," added Trinidad.

Trinidad and committee member Junjun Capistrano actually had no problem with an all-pro team, but Lito Alvarez, Wilson Young and Christian Tan pushed for an all-amateur squad.

full battle gear
02-23-2007, 08:00 AM
BAP-SBP open to all-pro team

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 02:05am (Mla time) 02/23/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Never underestimate the competition.

The leadership of the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and the Philippine Olympic Committee Thursday said they are open to fielding an all-professional squad in international tournaments leading to the Olympics.

BAP-SBP president Manny V. Pangilinan and POC president Jose “Peping” Cojuangco were on the same boat as far as the formation of the national team for the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championships is concerned, pointing out the dangers of overconfidence.

“Our Southeast Asian neighbors are moving heaven and earth to improve and beat us, so we should not take them for granted,” said Cojuangco.

“They are all-out when it comes to funding their respective national basketball teams,” added the former Tarlac congressman who is considering running again in the May elections for a seat in the House of Representatives in his district.

After announcing the lifting of the FIBA suspension Wednesday night, Pangilinan batted for a team made up of Philippine Basketball Association stars even in low-caliber tournaments such as the Seaba.

“I’ll stick my neck out,” said Pangilinan. “I’ve expressed my views to them (selection committee) that the Philippines is participating internationally for the first time in a long while.”

“It will also remove any item of uncertainty that we may not win, because you cannot discount the fact that other Asean nations are probably beefing up their own national teams. So, why take the chance?” added the big boss of Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co.

Headed by Philippine Basketball League commissioner Chino Trinidad, the five-man selection committee decided earlier this week that a composite team of amateurs and professionals will be fielded to the Seaba meet.

The committee also indicated that national coach Chot Reyes would be the head of the coaching staff, but would relegate the coaching chores to one of his assistants.

“The selection committee has its own prerogative, so I think we have to check and work it out what really is the best solution,” said Pangilinan.

Despite the stalemate, the PBA proceeded with the formation of the team and will name the members of the squad on Saturday.

PBA commissioner Noli Eala has instructed Reyes to come up with the final lineup not later than Friday.

“Almost all the players that Chot has talked with have shown full cooperation and desire to play for the team,” said Eala.

“In fact, some of the players not interviewed are even asking if they have a place in the team,” he added.

Eala said training for the national dribblers would begin on March 5, a day after the second conference of the PBA had kicked off. The chosen players will be pulled out from their respective PBA teams to concentrate on the national team.

full battle gear
02-23-2007, 08:08 AM
SEABA team issue goes to SBP board

The Philippine Star 02/23/2007

The issue about who’s calling the shots and the composition of the RP team to the SEABA championship could well be elevated to the SBP executive board with the pro sector and selection committee having conflicting views on the matter.

But even as the issue unsettled, national coach Chot Reyes said he was to meet his staff last night to finalize the lineup of his all-pro team to be announced in a press conference tomorrow,

"I was told to make the list now," said Reyes on orders given by the PBA board of governors.

Reyes was earlier advised by the five-man selection committee, composed of PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad, UAAP’s Junjun Capistrano, Air21 president Lito Alvarez, Tanduay top honcho Wilson Young and BAP’s Christian Tan, to just name one of his assistants that will handle a composite team to SEABA.

"I am also for an all-pro team, the best possible team that we can field, the SEABA being an important tournament of qualifying to the Olympics. However, upon the voting of the committee, I was outvoted. But I think this issue can still be raised to the executive committee of the SBP. A resolution can be made," said Capistrano.

The PBA board invoked a certain provision in the SBP by-laws that would empower them to handle the formation, training and actual participation of the RP team in this year’s SEABA.

Even SBP president Manny Pangilinan has expressed his preference for an all-pro team.

"I’ll stick my neck out. I’ve expressed my views to them (selection committee) that the Philippines is participating internationally for the first time in a long while. Secondly, to remove any item of uncertainty that we may not win, because you can’t discount the fact that other ASEAN nations are probably beefing up their own national teams. So why take the chance," said Pangilinan.

"Of course the selection committee has its own prerogative. So I think we have to check and work it out what is really the best solution," Pangilinan added. – Nelson Beltran

pachador
02-23-2007, 09:55 AM
sa tingin ko hindi dapat yan mag-ka problema or conflict if the PBA or any of the stakeholders sa SBP clears their press releases with their fellow stakeholders bago sila mag-announce sa press . mukhang reasonable naman siguro yung sa PBL. I think this is a lesson and growing pains for the SBP. all stakeholders should have a common press release , hindi yung kanya kanyang lakad lang.

Since the SBP is a federation or group composed of organizations, decision making will be inherently slower . anyway the SBP will have a planning session this weekend yata yun so hopefuly maayos na nila ang proceso ng kanilang decision-making at press releases para hindi na magulo or mag-ka misunderstanding.

full battle gear
02-24-2007, 11:36 AM
Reyes to bare all-pro RP team

By June Navarro, Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 06:27am (Mla time) 02/24/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- No matter the final composition, the Philippines is assured of a balanced, firepower-packed team for the Southeast Asian Basketball championship in May.

Just look at the list of candidates national coach Chot Reyes has at his disposal.

Centers: Rudy Hatfield, Asi Taulava, Mick Pennisi, Kerby Raymundo and Enrico Villanueva; Forwards: Dondon Hontiveros, Danny Seigle, Tony dela Cruz, Ren-Ren Ritualo, Ranidel de Ocampo and John Arigo; Guards: Mark Caguioa, Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Jimmy Alapag and Willie Miller.

Reyes, who will also likely call the shots for that team, came up with the lineup after consultation with members of his equally star-studded coaching staff (Jong Uichico, Tim Cone, Norman Black, Binky Favis) on Thursday night.

Incidentally, the Inquirer learned from a very reliable source yesterday that the Seaba joust could be moved to the Philippines from Malaysia through the efforts of telecommunications tycoon Manny V. Pangilinan, the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president.

The source, who was involved in the painstaking process that brought back the country’s international federation (Fiba)-recognition recently, said MVP had asked that the Philippines host the multi-nation event to signal the return of RP basketball on a grand scale.

Talks are also ongoing to use the PhilSports Arena (formerly Ultra) as venue with Pangilinan reportedly giving specific instructions of opening admission to the public.

A press conference, meanwhile, has been set by the PBA at noon today where Reyes will announce his selections.

The Fiba suspension on the Philippines was lifted on Wednesday and the newly affiliated BAP-SBP is wasting no time in coming up with a formidable squad that will train immediately once it is named.

Though a selection committee headed by PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad had earlier recommended a pro-am team for the Seaba tilt, the PBA is expected to get the concession of forming the team for the qualifying events leading to the Fiba-Asia Championships.

The recommendation for Reyes to designate one of his assistants to handle the Seaba team is also expected to be waived in the wake of calls for a super-strong lineup.

full battle gear
02-24-2007, 11:42 AM
SMB-RP mainstays form core of Chot’s nat’l team
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/24/2007

Key players of Talk n Text, Barangay Ginebra and San Miguel Beer are expected to make up the core of the squad embarking on a mission to give the country a return stint in the Olympics in Beijing next year.

Phone Pals Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag and Renren Ritualo, Ginebra Kings Mark Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand and Rudy Hatfield and Beermen Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros could lead the 12 players for the RP squad to be announced by national coach Chot Reyes in a press conference today.

Eric Menk, Rafi Reavis, Romel Adducul, Tony dela Cruz, Willy Miller, Yancy de Ocampo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Kerby Raymundo, James Yap, Dorian Peña, Kelly Williams and Enrico Villanueva are the other players with a good chance of making it to the team.

Menk, a veteran of the Busan Asian Games, should have been cinch to make the team if not for his injury. Reyes has apparently sought Menk’s doctors’ advice on the player’s status.

Sources said Reyes’ choices were confined to around 40 players who played for San Miguel Beer-Pilipinas in various international competitions the last two years.

Olsen Racela, Mike Cortez, Brandon Cablay, Mick Pennisi, Larry Fonacier, Mark Telan, Ronald Tubid, KG Canaleta, Don Allado, Wesley Gonzales, Denok Miranda, Arwind Santos, LA Tenorio, Jondan Salvador, Joseph Yeo and Joe DeVance also saw action for the team that had stints in the US, Qatar, Chinese Taipei and Brunei.

Besides going overseas, Reyes and his troops played host to the Asian Champion’s Cup and engaged Lebanon and the Dennis Rodman-led US Legends in exhibition matches at home turf.

They went through all these before deciding to temporarily fold up with the country suspended in FIBA-sanctioned events. This obviously put Reyes’ original program in disarray.

The PBA wants the Chosen Twelve named now due to the proximity of the FIBA-Asia championship which serves as the regional qualifier for the Beijing Games.

After being chosen to wear the country’s tri-color, the 12 players will be automatically pulled out from their mother teams in the PBA to immediately start training for the RP team.

Reyes plans to compete in various international competitions and set exhibition games with regional powers China and South Korea as part of their preparation for the Olympic qualifier.

full battle gear
02-24-2007, 11:50 AM
Taulava, Seigle banner RP team

By WAYLON GALVEZ
www.mb.com.ph


CHOT REYES, head of the national coaching staff, will reveal today his all-professional national team that will see action in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championship on May 24-28.

Reyes will name 12 players to the Philippine team, which will compete for the first time in international arena after serving almost two years ban from FIBA, which lifted the suspension last Wednesday.

The world governing basketball body recognized the new group Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and the election of its president, telecommunication magnate Manny V. Pangilinan.

The former Ateneo mentor, together with PBA Commissioner Noli Eala, will make the announcement at the Grilla’s Grill in Libis, Quezon City.

A source privy to the selection process mentioned several names that Reyes, mentor of San Miguel Beer, is seriously considering for the national team.

According to the source, they are Talk ‘N Text’s Asi Taulava, Renren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag, San Miguel’s Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros, Alaska’s Tony dela Cruz and Ginebra’s Jayjay Helterbrand and Rudy Hatfield.

Reyes, the source said who asked not to be named, added that the stylish mentor also wants to add Ginebra’s Eric Menk, the 2005 Most Valuable Player, Mark Caguioa, the recently crowned Best Player of the Philippine Cup.

Menk has yet to fully recover from a right calf muscle injury and Reyes wants team doctors to assure that the 6-foot-6 forward will be ready in time for SEABA.

As for Caguioa, a scoring machine that can light up the coliseum with his outside bombs from the trifecta and dare devil moves to the basket, his style of play is being questioned if it could fit Reyes’ system.

The PBA board, chaired by Talk ‘N Text’s Ricky Vargas, recently approved that the players selected to the national team will no longer play for their mother teams in the Fiesta Cup set to begin Mar. 4.

This will give the national team enough time to prepare for the SEABA in Bangkok, Thailand. The top two SEABA finishers will advance in the FIBA-Asia championship in July in Saitama, Japan, which serves as the Olympic qualifying tournament for the 2008 Beijing Games. One of the SBP ambitions is for the men’s national team to qualify to the Olympics after 26 years.

The last time the country played in the Olympics was during the 1972 Munich Games.

Others being considered are San Miguel’s Dorian Peña and Romel Adducul, Purefoods’ James Yap and Kerby Raymundo, Talk ‘N Text’s Yancy de Ocampo, Air21’s Ranidel de Ocampo, Red Bull’s Rico Villanueva, Alaska’s Willie Miller, Sta. Lucia’s Kelly Williams and Ginebra’s Rafi Reavis.

Before FIBA suspended the country, Reyes, with the strong backing of the PBA, implemented his program by tapping 40 players to the national pool.

From that pool he can get replacement if a player gets injured. Following the provision of the Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas constitution and bylaws (Section 1 Article 13), the pro sector has the mantle to send team to the elite competitions, namely the Olympics, World Championships, FIBA-Asia and their corresponding qualifying tournaments like the SEABA.

full battle gear
02-25-2007, 01:44 PM
New RP team a force in Asia
By Joey Villar
The Philippine Star 02/25/2007

Coach Chot Reyes proudly claimed he has got at his disposal a team which could match with Asia’s best in announcing the composition of the RP squad embarking on a mission to land a spot in the Olympics for the first time in over two decades.

Reyes picked five guards, five forwards and two centers to be given all the needed funding and the best training possible in their quest to make good in the FIBA-Asia championship in July to hopefully make the grade for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

The Chosen Twelve are Mark Caguioa, Jay-Jay Helterbrand and Rudy Hatfield of reigning PBA Philippine Cup champion Barangay Ginebra, Asi Taulava, Ren Ren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag of Talk n Text, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Tony dela Cruz of Alaska, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull and Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21.

Reyes also named three reserves he called the "Priority Three." These were Rommel Adducul of San Miguel, Rafi Reavis of Ginebra and Rico Villanueva of Red Bull.

"We made sure we would have a team which could match up with Asia’s best. This is the best team, not necessarily the best players and best talents," said Reyes in a press briefing at a restaurant in Libis, Quezon City.

Reyes said the players were chosen after a thorough deliberation, involving PBA commissioner Noli Eala and coaches Tim Cone of Alaska, Jong Uichico of Ginebra, Binky Favis of Coca-Cola and Norman Black of Ateneo.

"We consulted almost everyone. We laid down everything including the candidates and the tournaments we’re looking to participate in. In short, we went through the process of forming the best team possible," Reyes said.

Eala looked impressed with the team. He said: "This is the start of our quest of finally gaining a slot in the Olympics. The roadmap to Beijing starts now."

Curiously missing in the lineup were Ginebra’s Eric Menk and Alaska’s Willie Miller, among the prominent members of the original pool formed before the country was suspended by FIBA due to turf war among leaders of the sport.

Reyes didn’t explain why, but obviously Menk didn’t make it due to his injury while Miller bumped off by Caguioa, Hontiveros and Ritualo.

Pennisi was a big surprise since he was the player with least exposure in games played by the original SMB-RP pool. He probably attracted the coaches’ attention on his solid performance in the recent All-Filipino Cup, providing Red Bull an intimidating inside presence and steady touch from beyond the arc.

Reyes set March 5 as the start of their training since the players, who played in the recent PBA championship, begged for some rest.

The Nationals will attend training camps in the United States in March and in Australia in April before plunging into action in the Southeast Asia Basketball Association (SEABA) championship in May. The tournament is the qualifier for the FIBA-Asia championship slated July 28-Aug. 4 in Tokushima, Japan.

After the SEABA joust, the Nationals will proceed to Europe in June, to Qatar in July, then return home for a few tune-up games possibly against China and Korea before going to Japan.

"We’re trying to get as many exposures as possible because we really have little time to prepare because of the suspension," said Reyes.

Eala said the team will be funded by San Miguel Corp. and PLDT, which is chaired by BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny Pangilinan.

The PBA commissioner said the training could entail a cost of around P100 million.

full battle gear
02-26-2007, 11:57 AM
Chot Reyes: We can beat the Chinese

Defeating Asian power a matter of ‘how,’ not ‘if’
By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 01:49am (Mla time) 02/26/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Of all the questions asked of Chot Reyes when he named the members of the Philippine Team on Saturday, one reverberated inside the venue.

And his answer rang even louder.

“Yes, we can beat China,” Reyes boldly declared during the brief press conference held to unveil the country’s newest national team.

“But how we do that remains the big question.”

The firebrand San Miguel Beer coach selected five guards, the same number of forwards and two big men for the 12-man roster that will do battle in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championship first before campaigning in the FIBA-Asia joust for an Olympic slot in July.

The road to the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing will be rough, but Reyes said the Philippines, in a manner of speaking, will ride fast and furious cars instead of the comfortably big limousines on the way there.

“I honestly think that we have the best guards in Asia,” Reyes said. “China has the big players. But this (having the best guards) is our advantage and we intend to use that to the hilt.

“But make no mistake about it, this will not be automatic,” he added.

The team Reyes and his assistants built can “break people (defenses) down,” and can “run and shoot the three-pointer” if the need arises.

Team composition defended

Reyes defended the team’s 5-5-2 composition, saying that only two of its members -- Talk ‘N Text guard Jimmy Alapag and center Asi Taulava -- cannot play multiple positions.

The inclusion of Mick Pennisi also raised eyebrows, but Reyes and the coaching staff put into consideration the knack of the 6-foot-9 Filipino-Italian of hitting the three-point shot on a consistent basis and of playing tough defense.

Reyes took great pains explaining how the likes of Kerby Raymundo, Rudy Hatfield, Danny Seigle, Ranidel de Ocampo and Tony dela Cruz could play big and small positions with ease, and how Ren-Ren Ritualo and Dondon Hontiveros could slide from their normal off-guard spots to the point at any time.

Jay-Jay Helterbrand and Mark Caguioa could go down as the team’s focal points and Reyes is expected to make Barangay Ginebra’s “fast and furious” tandem his primary offensive charges.

Three alternates -- big men Rommel Adducul, Rafi Reavis and Enrico Villanueva -- will join the team’s preparations.

“We have workhorses in this team and that’s important,” Reyes said. “Plus, this is the first time that we have players here who really want to be here.”

Making the Olympics for the first time since the 1972 Munich Games could prove to be a huge task, even for a person who has proven to have accomplished a lot like Reyes.

But Reyes has taken the view from the optimist’s side of the world, agreeing to the old adage that every journey begins with a single step.

And, coupled with the prayers of an entire nation, Reyes believes that he has at his disposal what it would take to put the Philippines back in the grand stage of the sport.

full battle gear
02-27-2007, 11:36 AM
Uichico: New cage squad ‘better than RP’s Asiad five’

By June Navarro
Inquirer
Last updated 01:58am (Mla time) 02/27/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- When it comes to comparing the newly formed Philippine basketball team with its 2002 predecessor, no one is better qualified than former national coach Jong Uichico.

The Barangay Ginebra head coach called the shots for the RP five, also made up of Philippine Basketball Association stars, in the 2002 Busan Asian Games, the last significant international tournament for the national dribblers before the country was suspended by the International Basketball Federation or FIBA.

And though there is a thin line dividing the two RP teams in terms of composition, Uichico said there’s no doubt that the squad now under Chot Reyes is a lot better.

“I have no legitimate backup point guard back then,” said Uichico, whose team fell short of the bronze in the 2002 Asiad after yielding to eventual gold medalist South Korea in the semifinals and to Kazakhstan in the battle for third.

“The team now is more flexible,” added Uichico. “Except for Asi (Taulava) and Mick (Pennisi), all the players could move up and down from their respective positions.”

Olsen Racela was the only legitimate point guard in the 2002 lineup, forcing Uichico to utilize either Jeffrey Cariaso or Noy Castillo as backup court generals. In the PBA, Castillo and Cariaso are more comfortable playing off-guard.

Now, Reyes has the luxury of alternating Jimmy Alapag and Jayjay Helterbrand at the point. He also has a deeper two-guard rotation with Mark Caguioa, Dondon Hontiveros and Renren Ritualo around.

Uichico said these men could switch from one position to the other with relative ease, aside from being gifted with excellent shooting touch.

Comparing Racela to Alapag and Helterbrand, Uichico said there is also a huge disparity in terms of speed.

The present team, however, will be more vertically challenged than the previous one.

Aside from the 6-foot-9 Taulava and Pennisi, that 2002 team also had 6-9 Andy Seigle, 6-6 Eric Menk and Dennis Espino and 6-5 Danny Ildefonso.

Reyes will rely on 6-4 Rudy Hatfield, 6-5 Kerby Raymundo and 6-4 Ranidel De Ocampo to help Taulava and Pennisi man the slot. Danny Seigle (6-7) and Tony Dela Cruz (6-4) are expected to be more active in the wings.

“Forming a big lineup is actually a misconception because even if we go big, we’re not going to be that big compared to China, South Korea and even the Middle East countries,” said Uichico, who helped Reyes form the new team together with Alaska coach Tim Cone and Norman Black.

“If you ask me, the size of the team is enough. It’s actually a team which could also press and put premium on outside shots without necessarily sacrificing size.”

Uichico predicted that the present squad could make it to the 2008 Beijing Olympics given the proper training and the right breaks. “I believe we have a good shot at qualifying,” he said.

As host, China automaticallly gains an Olympic slot, leaving such tough countries as Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Qatar, Jordan and the Philippines to fight for the top two spots in the FIBA-Asia championships.

full battle gear
02-27-2007, 11:38 AM
Uichico: RP five can make it to Beijing
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 02/27/2007

Jong Uichico, the coach who came within seconds of sending the Philippine team to the Busan Asian Games final in 2002, believes coach Chot Reyes has formed a team that can go all the way to the Beijing Olympics next year.

"We have a good team with a balanced lineup that can really play different teams. It has a good chance to qualify for the Olympics," said Uichico, whose finals bid in Busan vanished in the air on a buzzer-beating three pointer by Korean sharpshooter Lee Sang Min.

Uichico gave his assessment using the recent Doha Asian Games as gauge. China beat host Qatar for the gold medal there.

"If the caliber of the competition is the same as in Doha, we’ll have a big chance. My worry is that some countries just used the Asian Games as training ground. They prepare harder for the FIBA-Asia championship, it being the qualifier for the Olympics and the World Champion-ship," said Uichico.

Outside China, the soft-spoken mentor pointed to the Arab teams as the squads that could well provide the Philippines tough challenge.

"I am more worried with Korea and Japan. They’ve been improving and it’s hard to scout them since we’re not familiar with their recruitment program," said Uichico.

The former RP mentor insisted Reyes’ team could fare well against the squads he has seen in action in the Doha Games.

"The Arabs find it hard to put up a strong inside defense because they have lean physique and Asi (Taulava) could handle their defense," said Uichico.

Uichico also insisted the squad composed of Taulava, Jimmy Alapag, Renren Ritualo, Mark Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand, Rudy Hatfield, Danny Seigle, Dondon Hontiveros, Kerby Raymundo, Tony dela Cruz, Mick Pennisi and Ranidel de Ocampo is a formidable team that can run, shoot and defend the perimeter.

"We have two able point guards in Helterbrand and Alapag, two guards in Hontiveros and Caguioa who can shoot and defend the perimeter. We have Seigle who can play 3 and 4, Raymundo and De Ocampo who can play 4 and 5. And with big guys Mick Pennisi and Asi Taulava, we can spread the floor on defense," said Uichico.

full battle gear
02-28-2007, 12:39 PM
RP quintet to cost P70 million

Wedding plans may leave Hatfield out of squad
By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 01:22am (Mla time) 02/28/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Here’s how much it will cost to train the national team straight up to the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in August: P70 million.

That includes, among others, salaries, perks and bonuses, training expenses and plane tickets the team needs to book to compete in the international scene.

Indeed, there will be no discounts as the Philippine Basketball Association prepares the team for a possible shot at the Olympics.

There may be no Rudy Hatfield, too.

“It will not be a small amount,” PBA commissioner Noli Eala said of the possible budget, which will be shouldered by the PBA teams.

Computed at an average of P350,000 a month for each player’s basic pay, which is the league maximum, the teams which lent their players to the RP squad will be forking out at least a combined P29.4 million for talents they won’t even be using.

And the proposed budget for training that is up for approval has been pegged at P40 million, up until the end of the FIBA-Asia in Tokoshima, Japan, in the first week of August alone.

Hatfield, though, may miss that Olympic-qualifying event.

The 6-foot-3 workhorse has told the team that the FIBA-Asia tournament runs smack into his wedding plans, which were already finalized as early as last year when the Barangay Ginebra star was filling his days away from basketball by honing a new skill in a professional wrestling school.

Hatfield spent time away from the league because of citizenship problems that forced him to return to the United States.

Possible replacement

Should Hatfield choose to push through with the wedding as scheduled, Chot Reyes will have to name his replacement from among the alternates on the roster -- Rafi Reavis, Rommel Adducul or Enrico Villanueva.

Eala did not go into details as to how the budget will be divvied up, but the Philippine Daily Inquirer learned Tuesday about “certain bonus and incentive schemes” which the league had drawn up for each member of the 12-man squad.

The regular team is made up of Asi Taulava, Ren-Ren Ritualo, Jimmy Alapag, Tony dela Cruz, Mick Pennisi, Kerby Raymundo, Dondon Hontiveros, Danny Seigle, Ranidel de Ocampo, Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa and whoever replaces Hatfield.

Team’s big sacrifice

Under the scheme, each player shall receive his salary from his respective mother clubs, quite a sacrifice to the teams considering that the players will be pulled out for the Fiesta Conference and will dedicate themselves solely to national cause.

Part of it also calls for the players in the Philippine team to also receive their won-game bonuses from their mother teams who win the Fiesta Conference even if they don’t play.

The RP team’s budget committee is made up of Eala, Red Bull team manager Tony Chua, San Miguel Corp. executive Robert Non and PBA board chair Ricky Vargas of Smart/PLDT.

Expected approval

They are expected to approve the budget without a hitch since this was also applied during the 2002 Busan Asian Games, where the last all-pro, all-star team was sent under coach Jong Uichico.

The new RP Team will go to the United States for a two-week training camp in April before heading to Australia to play in an invitational tournament and then to the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championship.

After the Seaba, a European tour has been scheduled before a stint in the Qatar Invitational in late June. The preparations will wind up with a tournament in Manila before the team flies to Japan about a week before the FIBA-Asia scheduled July 28-Aug. 5.

pachador
03-01-2007, 03:08 PM
I'm glad that Chot picked Mick Pennisi. He brings tough defense to the painted area. I hope pennisi does not rough-up on yao ming too much who is still recovering from broken bones. ;D mamaya mag-wala si pennisi at mabalian uli ng buto uli si yao ming . kawawa naman ang houston rockets. kaya siguro hindi na kinuha sa enrico villanueva dahil kung nang diyan si Pennisi at Villanueva ay baka may rumble ang bawat laro ng Philippines :D

seriously, I noticed Yao ming broke his arm then now his leg. i wonder if this is the start of a downhill for him...usually , a player's career goes down when injuries start piling up which happens when one gets older........

pachador
03-02-2007, 02:10 AM
According to news, the Philippine national team will train in Los Angeles suburb of Carson at this camp:
http://www.impactbball.com/home.html

Sana our young big men will be sent here as well tulad ni Eman Samigue, Rino Berame, and other young centers or the SBP should hire trainers from this basketball camp to come to the Philippines and train all the young and promising, high school ,college and commercial league centers for 1 year.

full battle gear
03-02-2007, 10:42 AM
Well-funded RP five starts bonding in US

By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 01:29am (Mla time) 03/02/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- A high-profile training for a high-profile national basketball squad.

With three of its mainstays already in the United States, the all-star, all-pro Philippine team under coach Chot Reyes will start its buildup in a Los Angeles training camp next week.

Reyes announced the change in the schedule Thursday, hours before he was to justify before the special budget committee of the RP team the proposed P40 million training and incentives budget of the squad bidding to crash into the 2008 Beijing Olympics through the Seaba championship in May and the FIBA-Asia in July.

The committee is made up of Philippine Basketball Association chair Ricky Vargas, commissioner Noli Eala, Red Bull’s Tony Chua and San Miguel Corp. executive Robert Non.

“We still have to do the administrative work, clean house first, before we start training,” Reyes told the Philippine Daily Inquirer over the phone Thursday.

The actual expense could run up to P70 million, counting the salaries that the players will receive, which is the equivalent of the rates they are getting from their mother clubs in the PBA.

The bulk of the P40 million that is being sought for approval will be spent mostly on travel expenses. The team is expected to leave soon.

With Barangay Ginebra stalwarts Mark Caguioa, Jay-Jay Helterbrand and Rudy Hatfield already in the US to be with their families, Reyes felt it best to start the US sojourn ahead of time and rendezvous with the three players there.

Reyes will enter the team in the same training camp in Los Angeles where the Talk ‘N Text team enrolls during PBA off-seasons and which has some top NBA stars as clients.

The US camp, he said, can jumpstart training, as all 12 of his players will be placed in a rigid skills and conditioning camp to get them in perfect game shape in as little as two weeks’ time.

“That camp will run players to the ground,” Reyes said. “It will be a working trip for each and every one of us in there. There will be no rest.”

The LA camp, he said, will run for 14 straight days with the players leaving their hotel rooms at 7:30 in the morning for three practice sessions. The long day ends about 8 p.m.

Stints in tough invitational tournaments in Europe, Qatar, Australia and Manila are also lined up for the RP team before they see action in the FIBA-Asia tournament, the qualifier for the Beijing Olympics, in Tokoshima, Japan.

The immediate target for the RP team is to finish at least second in the Seaba tournament in May to qualify for the FIBA-Asia, where the top two teams, except defending champion China, gain slots to the 2008 Olympics. As host, China gains an automatic Olympic spot.

full battle gear
03-02-2007, 10:46 AM
American coaches to train RP quintet
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/02/2007

Members of the national team are to undergo intensive skills and conditioning training under a pool of American coaches if their US trip pushes through as planned by coach Chot Reyes.

Reyes said they have yet to get the formal approval for the trip but budget committee member Tony Chua said it’s only a matter of formality with San Miguel Corp. and PLDT to shoulder the expenses.

The plan is to enroll the RP team for a two-week training at the AIB camp in Los Angeles – the same camp attended by the Talk n Text Phone Pals during the off-season.

"It’s an intensive training, your only rest is when you hit the sack," said Reyes.

"It’s practically an 8-5 job. You undergo skills and conditioning training from 8-11 a.m., scrimmage from 1-3 p.m. and weights training from 3-5 p.m. When you go back to the hotel, you’re about to collapse," said Talk n Text team manager Frankie Lim.

"It’s a good skills and conditioning training for the RP team. It would be helpful. I just don’t know if they would be able to experience playing with NBA players. We did because it was NBA off-season when we were there," said Talk n Text coach Derrick Pumaren.

Al Harrington, Dontay Jones and Tyrone Lue were among the NBA players trying to get in shape when the Phone Pals were at the AIB camp.

"Whoever are in the camp will join us in scrimmage. In our case, we suggested it could be more helpful if our players were pitted with the NBA players. So the boys were able to play with them," said Pumaren.

Pumaren said guards, forwards and centers are divided to undergo different skills training by the American coaches headed by Joe Abunassar, a protégé of legendary US coach Bobby Knight.

Reyes hopes that they make it to US towards the end of March, saying six Chinese national players, led by Li Jian Yian, are also booked in the camp.

"It’s a good opportunity to see the Chinese. But my No. 1 goal is to work on my players’ skills, conditioning and bonding," said Reyes who plans to bring the team to Australia afterwards.

In Australia, the Nationals will be trained at the Australian Institute of Sports then will have tune-up matches with NBL ball clubs.

"They have also invited other Asian teams. They may even put up a mini-tourney," said Reyes.

The US and Australian trips are initial parts of Reyes’ training program for the RP team in its quest for a return stint in the Olympics in Beijing next year.

The team may also go to Europe for a series of tune-up matches before heading to Tokoshima, Japan in July for the FIBA-Asia championship, the regional qualifier for the Beijing Games.

full battle gear
03-03-2007, 11:20 AM
Nationals to play tune-up games in PBA Fiesta Cup
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/03/2007

The Philippine team will make occasional appearances in the PBA Fiesta Cup and will be pitted against PBA ball clubs or invited foreign teams in tune-up matches as part of their buildup for the tough Olympic qualifier in Japan in July.

"Whenever the RP team is at home, back from training abroad, it will play on the Thursday schedule of the Fiesta Cup. Thursday games are set mostly in the province or in non-traditional Metro Manila PBA playing venues," said PBA operations chief Rickie Santos.

Tune-up games in the course of the Fiesta Cup could well provide the Nationals extra boost in their preparation for the FIBA-Asia championship in Tokoshima, Japan.

So far, the RP team is confirmed to go on a two-week training in the AIB camp in Los Angeles and compete in SEABA championship in May and in a Doha invitational tournament in the first week of July.

The Nationals are set to play Jordan, Lebanon and Qatar in Doha.

RP team coach Chot Reyes, however, is having second thoughts on playing in the Champions Cup qualifier in Indonesia. If the Nationals miss the event, they are automatically out of the Champions Cup proper in Iran.

Still up for approval is Reyes’ plan to bring the Nationals to Australia after their two-week training in the US in the latter part of this month.

The direction of the team is likely to be discussed by the BAP Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas board of trustees in its two-day planning session which was to start yesterday at the Tagaytay Highlands.

.Reyes, however, may not be able to do his original plan of starting the training on Monday at the Moro Lorenzo Center inside Ateneo with most of the players on vacation in the US.

Reyes said the more practical thing to do is start the training in the AIB camp.

With the nationals allowed to concentrate on their stint with the RP team, Santos said they made some revisions in the Fiesta Cup format and calendar.

Instead of nine games, the schedule is now down to eight in a week. The semis playoff, meanwhile, is back to best-of-seven from best-of-five.

The PBA earlier shortened the Fiesta Cup format and calendar to finish at least a month before the FIBA-Asia championship.

"No need to shorten the schedule now with the Nationals already pulled out from their mother teams," said Santos.

pachador
03-05-2007, 11:30 PM
March 05, 2007 , journal

Cebu offers to host SEABA tilt
CEBU, considered one of the country’s basketball hotbeds, has come forward and made known its willingness to host the 2007 South East Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championship.

The offer was laid down on the table by basketball officials from the Queen City of the South amidst confirmed reports that the biennial meet, serving as a qualifying event to the FIBA-Asia Championship in Tokushima, Japan, will be staged in the Philippines on May 24-28.

A highly placed source admitted that aside from Cebu, Mandaue City is also bidding to have the first major international basketball tournament to be held in the country in the last two years be brought down South.

Cebu and Mandaue offered their proposals during the planning session held by the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas in Tagaytay during the weekend.

The same source, however, refused to name the cage officials from the provinces who expressed their intention to host the SEABA. Michael Lhuillier, Yayoy Alcoseba and Elmer Cabahug are among the prominent basketball personalities representing Cebu within the BAP-SBP Board of Trustees. Gerry Ramos

full battle gear
03-06-2007, 11:37 AM
Sked conflict puts RP team in a bind

By Waylon Galvez
www.mb.com.ph


A SCHEDULING conflict may force the formation of a second national team which will play in an Asian commercial league tournament, basketball officials said yesterday.

The current all-PBA team being handled by Coach Chot Reyes will compete in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championshipin May. But another tournament, the Champions Cup, is slated beginning April 9 in Jakarta.

Since the two tournaments are too close from each other, officials of the Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas are discussing whether the SEABA squad will also compete in the Champions Cup.

"That’s not included in our schedule (Champions Cup). Ang problema if at the last minute, they (SBP) give it to us, sasalpok ‘yun sa US tour namin," said Reyes, referring to training camp of nationals in California. "Some officials told us that the tournament (Champions Cup) is not covered by the pro sector. I think the selection committee is the one in charge of it."

In the constitution and by-laws of SBP, the professional sector is in charge in the formation of the national team for the Olympics, World Championship and its qualifying tournaments.

The Champion’s Cup is a tournament sanctioned by FIBA for top commercial teams from various countries, not neccessarily the national team.

The top two teams in the SEABA championship will advance to the FIBA-Asia, which serves as qualifying meet for next year’s Beijing Olympics.

On the other hand, the Jakarta meet serves as the regional qualifying for the Champion’s Cup of FIBA-Asia in Tehran, Iran on September.

Philippine Basketball League (PBL) Commissioner Chino Trinidad, who heads the SBP selection committee, said that they have not discussed the issue yet with Pangilinan.

"Wala pa kaming na-discuss regarding club championship. It’s the SEABA men’s championship that was discussed and it will definitely be an all-pro team," said Trinidad.

The FIBA-Asia Champions Cup was held in the country two years ago. The RP team under Reyes finished fifth.

The stint was the last international meet for the RP squad as FIBA suspended the country a few months later.

PBL’s Hapee Toothpaste, powered by import Tony Harris, was the last local squad to rule the biennial meet when it was held here in the country in 1996.

Previous RP squads that won the Champions Cup include the PBL Andok’s team in 1995, Swift in 1988 and the multi-titled RP-Northern Consolidated quintet during the inaugural staging in 1984.

Meanwhile, Reyes has moved the first practice session of the nationals to March. 12 at the Moro Lorenzo Gym in Katipunan, saying: "Some members of the team asked for it for them to be able to get some rest."

pachador
03-08-2007, 01:31 AM
China’s global rise takes US route

BLUE RIVER, Oregon. – With a smooth flick of the wrist, Zheng Zhun’s spindly fingers send the basketball spinning toward the rim. The net cord stirs only for a moment before Zheng launches another long jump shot, again extending his rail-thin arms.

"Watch how the ball leaves his hand," said Cameron Hill, a coach at the United States Basketball Academy (USBA) in central Oregon. "There aren’t many seven-footers in the world with that type of shooting touch."

At 7-foot-1 and 17 years old, Zheng is one of 25 boys – some as young as 11 – from China who have spent the last few months in the backwoods of Oregon at a training camp that could help to tip the global balance of basketball power.

Basketball will be an important showcase in the 2008 Beijing Olympic games where China will highlight Yao Ming, the Houston Rockets’ All-Star center and one of the country’s most famous athletes.

On a secluded encampment along the banks of the McKenzie River, Chinese players train daily with American coaches on defensive techniques and shooting drills with the dream of one day playing in the NBA like Yao.

Off the court, the players retreat to cabin-style dormitories where they play video games, watch Chinese movies and nap in bunkbeds too short for their long frames.

The group includes three players over seven feet. Most of the teenage boys are at least six foot four inches, including the guards. Li Qi, the youngest player at 11, is six feet tall and can dunk a volleyball on a regulation hoop with ease. His hands are not big enough to hold a basketball.

This is the second group of promising young players sent by the junior clubs of Chinese Basketball Association teams to the US Basketball Academy, a year-round training facility founded by former University of Hawaii coach Bruce O’Neil.

"In 10 years, China is going to be a power in basketball throughout the world," said O’Neil, who aims to expand the program to 80 players next year. "There are several hundred seven-footers in China. They’re everywhere."

China’s push for basketball superpower status marks the next phase in the sport’s globalization, which started with victories by European and South American teams in recent years in international competitions once dominated by the US.

The next wave of Chinese basketball heroes is already following Yao to the NBA. Yi Jianlian, an athletic seven-foot forward from Guangdong, is likely to be one of the first players selected in this year’s NBA draft.

Zheng represents the challenges and the potential for the players in the program. He is tall, athletic and skilled but he can be lazy and needs to add mass and strength to his bony 190-pound (86-kg) frame, according to the coaches.

"The players aren’t afraid to work but they need constant motivation," said Hill, who along with another coach, Chris Briggs, delivers instructions to the players in simple phrases and animated hand gestures.

In a bungalow near the basketball gym, the coaches push the players through weight-lifting exercises and agility drills while hip-hop music blares over the speakers. The music is so loud that it disrupts an English class taking place in a smaller space adjacent to the weight room.

The instructor struggles to get the players to abandon conversations in Mandarin but the boys agree to take turns reading aloud an English book about Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

In order to ensure the players eat enough food and maintain a proper diet, the USBA hired a cook to prepare Chinese food for the players, who gobble up more than 30 pounds (13.6 kg) of rice a day.

"They can’t eat American food every day," said chef Jack Chang, a native of Taiwan who calls the players his children.

"They’re all teenagers. Their plates look like small mountains of food."

Like many American teenagers, the players love trips to the shopping mall, where the group is greeted with dumbfounded stares and autograph requests. Players return with stacked boxes of sneakers and shopping bags full of athletic gear and electronics.

Malaya news March 7 ,2007

full battle gear
03-09-2007, 11:43 AM
RP cage team to train in US

China may join invitational tourney here
By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 03:03am (Mla time) 03/09/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippine basketball team will not be going down under anymore, and instead, will leave on March 29 for a two-week training camp in the United States after its budget was approved without a hitch this week.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Basketball Association is close to getting confirmation for a fourth Asian national team – China -- to play in an invitational tournament in Manila in July.

The Philippine squad has also confirmed its participation in a tough Invitational tournament in Qatar in July, a few days after its expected romp in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) championship.

National coach Chot Reyes has stricken off the Australian Invitational from the team’s itinerary after China said that it would not participate there.

“Coach Chot wants to play the Asian teams as many times as we can before the FIBA-Asia,” PBA commissioner Noli Eala told the Inquirer Wednesday night. “[Without China there], going to Australia would not be advisable anymore.”

Eala added that the Korean Basketball League, where most of the Korean national team members and the Chinese-Taipei squad will come from, confirmed their stints in the Manila Invitational.

The FIBA-Asia is the qualifying tournament for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics in China. To get there, the Philippines must finish in the top two of the Seaba, which the country could end up hosting.

In the US, the RP five is set to join a training camp in Los Angeles, which also hosts a tournament of sorts participated in by free agents looking for spots in NBA squads. After that training camp, where the Nationals will play scrimmages with the NBA players and go through grueling conditioning and skills sessions, they fly to Europe, where they will stay for 10 days.

The team has no definite destination yet in Europe because it is still finding out which tournament the Asian heavyweights will play in before finalizing its itinerary.

Eala, who is a member of the RP Team budget committee together with San Miguel Corp. executive Robert Non, Red Bull team manager Tony Chua and Smart/PLDT’s Ricky Vargas, said the budget for the squad was already approved hitch-free, allowing the coaching staff to start planning on getting ready for the international tournaments it is scheduled to play in.

An earlier Inquirer report said that the budget could run to P70 million until the FIBA-Asia in Tokoshima, Japan, where the goal of the team will be to snag an Olympic berth. The figure includes bonuses and perks for the 12-man team.

A stint in the tough Qatar meet in July would complete Team Philippines’ up-close look on the opposition, with the Filipinos to play the Gulf teams like Jordan and Qatar there.

Meanwhile, Rudy Hatfield is still seeking a compromise that will allow him to wear the national colors and go on with his wedding, which had been planned close to a year before he was named to the RP 5.

Preparations for the wedding, which will conflict with the team’s schedule, have already reached its final stages.

Hatfield was due to arrive Thursday night from the US. Also planing in soon are Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand, giving the RP team an intact lineup once it starts training on Monday.

If Hatfield cannot find a compromise with Reyes on a workable schedule, then the coaching staff will choose from among national team alternates Rafi Reavis, Rommel Adducul and Enrico Villanueva to take his place.

full battle gear
03-12-2007, 11:33 AM
National cage team starts practice

Inquirer
Last updated 02:16am (Mla time) 03/12/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The star-studded Philippine basketball team practices for the first time on Monday, taking the first of many steps in the road which many hope would lead all the way to the Olympics in China next year.

A couple of faces are expected to miss the 1 p.m. practice at the Moro Lorenzo gym on Katipunan Avenue in Quezon City as Chot Reyes and other members of the coaching staff preside over the session.

Mark Caguioa and Jay-Jay Helterbrand are still reportedly on the way back to the country from a brief vacation in the United States.

The other members are Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag, Ren-Ren Ritualo, Tony dela Cruz, Kerby Raymundo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Dondon Hontiveros and Danny Seigle and alternates Rudy Hatfield, Enrico Villanueva, Rafi Reavis and Rommel Adducul.

Hatfield was selected into the first team but begged off because of his scheduled wedding to Brittany Herr in August. Musong Castillo

full battle gear
03-12-2007, 11:38 AM
Villanueva likely to replace Hatfield

www.mb.com.ph


THE REPLACEMENT of Ginebra’s do-it-all Rudy Hatfield will be known today when the Philippine team holds its first practice day at the Moro Lorenzo Gym inside the sprawling Ateneo campus in Katipunan.

But there are strong indications that Hatfield’s replacement would Red Bull’s Enrico Villanueva.

Chot Reyes is expected to name Villanueva in today’s team practice.

Villanueva has reportedly sought clearance from the Red Bull management for him to play for the RP team.

Red Bull management has yet to make its decision, but team manager Tony Chua said they’re willing to let go of Villanueva if chosen to fill in for Hatfield.

Hatfield begged off from joining the team because the tournament that the team will be competing in the Japan in July runs conflict with his wedding preparations.

"We don’t have much time but we’ll do everything to get us prepared for the tough battles ahead," said Reyes.

The national team is preparing for two important international tournaments starting with the SEABA Championship where the top two placers earn a slot to the FIBA-Asian Championship, a tournament which serves as the qualifying event for next year’s Beijing Olympics in July.

The top two finishers in the tournament will join host China as Asia’s representatives to the quadrennial event.

"We have a very good chance of earning an Olympic spot. There’s no doubt that we have the talent. All we have to do is make the team ready," said Reyes.

The SEABA also is the country’s first tournament abroad in almost two years after FIBA lifted its suspension last February when it recognized the new group Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas with Manny V. Pangilinan as president.

As Reyes puts it, the players he got may not be the most talented, but is the best team so far compared with previous all-PBA squads.

Included to the team are Best Player of the Conference Mark Caguioa and Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP) Jayjay Helterbrand of newly-crowned Philippine Cup champion Barangay Ginebra.

The Ginebra backcourt duo, however, is still in the United States.

Also picked by Reyes are 2003 MVP Asi Taulava and former Rookie of the Year recipients Jimmy Alapag, RenRen Ritualo and Danny Seigle. Completing the roster are Dondon Hontiveros, Kerby Raymundo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Tony dela Cruz and Mick Pennisi.

Reyes has scheduled a three-week training camp in Los Angeles, California . The team is also scheduled to have goodwill games in Australia, Europe and Middle East.

Friendly matches against China, Chinese-Taipei and South Korea are also in the pipeline. —Waylon GALVEZ

full battle gear
03-13-2007, 11:15 AM
RP cage team holds first practice

Seigle feels good about squad
By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 02:00am (Mla time) 03/13/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Danny Seigle, nursing a fever and all, watched from the sidelines as the other members of the crack Philippine squad loosened up for their first practice session Monday.

He was not in it at that moment, but the 6-foot-7 San Miguel Beer forward still could not hide his excitement.

“I have a good feeling about this team,” Seigle, whose first RP team stint came in the Sultan’s Cup in Brunei last year, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer. “We got the pieces in place and I think with that, we can compete at a high level.”

Coach Chot Reyes presided over the first practice of the team, one which will go on for six days a week until March 28, a day before the Nationals fly to Los Angeles for a two-week training camp.

There, the RP team could get its first look at mighty China, with the Chinese also having been enrolled in the camp starting April 1.

Scrimmages with the Defenders, Los Angeles’ team in the NBDL (National Basketball Development League), have also been scheduled for “Team Pilipinas.”

Monday’s session at the Moro Lorenzo gym inside the Ateneo de Manila University campus in Quezon City was star-studded to say the least, but assistant coach Norman Black said this squad is different to the ones assembled for national duty before.

“The guys that are here really want to be here,” said Black, who coached a similarly all-star squad in the Hiroshima Asian Games. “Unlike before, when we saw some hesitancy on the part of some of the players.

“If we can jell, there are a very few teams in Asia that can beat us.”

Four set to join later

Eleven players showed up for work Monday, with four -- Barangay Ginebra standouts Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Rafi Reavis, Rudy Hatfield and Mark Caguioa -- set to join the team this week.

Asi Taulava, Mick Pennisi, Jimmy Alapag, Ren-Ren Ritualo, Dondon Hontiveros, Enrico Villanueva, Kerby Raymundo, Tony Dela Cruz, Rommel Adducul and Ranidel de Ocampo were present.

Helterbrand is scheduled to return Tuesday from South Carolina, Reavis and Caguioa will fly in later in the week, also from the US, while Hatfield is attending regular practice with his mother ballclub.

Meanwhile, the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championship will be held in Thailand on May 24 to 28, according to Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Noli Eala.

Eala received a letter from FIBA-Asia chair Dato Yeoh informing the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas on the venue for the Seaba, which will be held in the city of Ratchaburi.

The Seaba is the qualifier for the FIBA-Asia tournament in Tokoshima, Japan, where the Philippines hopes to land at least in second spot to be able to qualify for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China.

full battle gear
03-13-2007, 11:18 AM
National team opens training for Olympic bid
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/13/2007

The Philippine team set in motion its preparation to scale the Great Wall – the 2008 Beijing Olympics – as members of the squad assembled yesterday at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center.

Coach Chot Reyes re-opened camp for the Nationals at the center inside Ateneo yesterday, resuming their training interrupted for six months by FIBA’s suspension of the country in international play.

The Nationals, including reserves Rico Villanueva and Romel Adducul but minus Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand who are still on vacation in the US, were welcomed by PBA commissioner Noli Eala and blessed by Ateneo rector Fr. Raymund Holscher.

Danny Seigle showed up despite running a fever although he just stayed on the sideline.

Before starting the session, Reyes announced that Rudy Hatfield is definitely out of the team and impressed on the players that they’re going to live together in the next five months as they seek to bring the Philippines back to its old place in Asian basketball.

Eala lauded the players for the sacrifice they will make, then led the team to its battlecry – Eight-Eight-Eight – referring to Aug. 8, 2008 which is the opening of the Beijing Games.

With only five months to prepare for the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier, Reyes said he’s drawn up a battle plan, which "is tantamount to cramming."

"We’ve lined up training and competitions between now and July. We’re cramming because of the delay but we’ll make the best out of the time left," said Reyes.

Minus Caguioa, Helterbrand and Seigle, the Nationals spent the first day of their training just doing abdominal exercises, dynamic stretching, weights, interval running then shooting under strength and conditioning coach Dennis Aenlla.

Assisting the players in the shoot-around were assistant coaches Norman Black, Binky Favis and Aboy Castro.

"We undergo intensive training as we attend a clinic in the US (in the first two weeks of April)," said Reyes.

Reyes scheduled 13 sessions at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center before their departure for the AIB camp in Carson, California on March 29.

From there, the Nationals resume their training back home before competing in the SEABA championship in Rachaburi, Thailand on May 24-28.

"I believe in little success. Small successes could become vital parts of an undertaking that could lead you to a great success," said Reyes on their forthcoming SEABA stint.

After SEABA, the Nationals will tour Europe also for training then fly to Qatar for a tough invitational tourney featuring some of the best in the region.

"We’ve got to be the best in the region, if we’re to make it to the Olympics. If we can play the best teams as much as possible, that’s the way to do it," said Reyes.

full battle gear
03-13-2007, 11:19 AM
Chot on James: Nothing personal

The Philippine Star 03/13/2007

During the first training session of the RP team, coach Chot Reyes had to deal with one pesky query – "Did James Yap fail to make the team because of his personal problem?"

He refused to be drawn to the show biz side of the issue, saying the reigning PBA MVP wasn’t selected for the team "purely on basketball decision."

"James’ slot went to Dondon Hontiveros, Renren Ritualo and Mark Caguioa. We felt we can’t take out our best wing defender in Dondon and we can’t leave our best shooter in Renren. What swung to Caguioa’s favor is that he can slide to two-guard when the need arises," Reyes explained.

Reyes said Yap and another former PBA MVP awardee Willie Miller were the only two other players considered for the position.

"Good thing James is only 25 and he can get a crack (at the RP team) the next time. But for now, given the time at our disposal, we made that decision," said Reyes.

At the moment, the RP team is down to 11 players with the withdrawal of Ginebra’s Rudy Hatfield due to his forthcoming wedding.

But Reyes has two reserves in Rico Villanueva and Romel Adducul, who reported in the team’s first practice session yesterday. Third reserve Rafi Reavis is also practically out as he’s set to undergo a shoulder surgery.

Villanueva is tipped to replace Hatfield, where he is expected to join Hontiveros, Ritualo, Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand, Jimmy Alapag, Tony dela Cruz, Mick Pennisi, Asi Taulava, Ranidel de Ocampo, Kerby Raymundo and Danny Seigle in the national squad. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
03-13-2007, 11:20 AM
Long march to Beijing begins

By TITO TALAO
www.mb.com.ph


AN OLD Chinese proverb maintains only the worthy can scale the Great Wall of China.

Yesterday, the core of a 12-man, all-pro national team took the first painful steps to enlightenment and worthiness, with a berth to the 2008 Beijing Olympics their ultimate goal and survival for the next five months of rigorous training their personal mission.

More than two years after a vision to return to the Olympic Games first saw light, then blurred by the suspension meted by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), stars from the Philippine Basketball Association summoned by national coach Chot Reyes reported for practice at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center.

Heeding the call were Asi Taulava, Renren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag of Talk ‘N Text, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, and Tony dela Cruz of Alaska.

Also in attendance for Day One of training were alternates Rico Villanueva of Red Bull and Romel Adducul of San Miguel.

The Kings’ dynamic duo, Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand, are expected to be back from vacation in the States today and tomorrow – Helterbrand from South Carolina and Caguioa from California.

Two other alternates, Ginebra’s Rafi Reavis and Rudy Hatfield, who begged off from the national team due to his forthcoming wedding, were unable to make it because of earlier commitments with their mother ball club.

Seigle, the Beermen’s hotshot forward, was present but running a slight fever and did not join in the 45-minute abdominal stretching exercise and the ensuing weights, running and shooting drills.

Prior to its disbandment, of the 12-man RP squad that won the Brunei Cup in August last year, only six, Hontiveros, Taulava, Pennisi, Ritualo, Seigle and De Ocampo, remain.

"The guys you see here will be the guys you’ll be living with for the next five months until we get to Japan," said Reyes during team huddle prior to the start of the five-days-a-week regimen.

Tokushima, Japan is the site of the FIBA-Asia men’s championship, the pre-Olympics qualifying tournament from July 26 to August 5.

The RP team will compete in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association tourney in Thailand from May 24-28, using the regional competition to qualify for the FIBA-Asia and complete preparation for the Tokushima championship where the nationals need to win the title or finish second to China to get an Olympic invite.

"No sacrifice is bigger than to play for flag and country, and I thank you, guys," said PBA Commissioner Noli Eala, exhorting them afterward: "Remember, fellows, eight-eight-eight!"

The Olympics unfolds on August 8, 2008.

With Eala in overseeing the first day of RP team practice were Rickie Santos, PBA operations manager, Perry Martinez, technical committee chief, and Willy Marcial, media bureau director.

With Reyes were assistants Norman Black, coach of the Ateneo Blue Eagles, Coca-Cola mentor Binky Favis, Jalma Arnedo and Aboy Castro, and strength and conditioning coach Dennis Anelle.

A Philippine basketball team last saw action in the Olympic Games in 1972 in Munich, the year Muslim terrorists called the "Black September" scaled the walls of the Athletes Village and then held hostage and later killed half a dozen Israeli athletes and coaches.

The nationals, under coach Ning Ramos and led by Robert Jaworski, finished 13th with three wins and six losses after eventual champion Russia.

The United States, behind future NBA star Doug Collins, took the silver medal.

full battle gear
03-13-2007, 11:21 AM
Chot undecided on 12th RP player

By waylon galvez
www.mb.com.ph


NATIONAL COACH Chot Reyes’ choice as alternate for Rudy Hatfield is now a toss up between Rico Villanueva and Romel Adducul after Rafi Reavis was ruled out of the reserve list due to a shoulder injury.

The 6-foot-8 Reavis, who helped Barangay Ginebra win the Philippine Cup, will undergo antistrophic surgery on his left shoulder today in Los Angeles, California. Reavis, Adducul and Villanueva were named to the reserve list.

It would take at least two weeks after surgery before Reavis could begin his rehabilitation program.

Because of Reavis’ injury, Reyes and the national team coaching staff have to pick between Villanueva of Red Bull and Adducul of San Miguel Beer, who play similar positions of power forward/center.

Hatfield recently gave up his spot in the Philippine Team as he is preparing for an Aug. 5 wedding with his American fiancée Brittany Herr in Ireland.

Reyes officially announced that Hatfield won’t be available for the national team during the team’s first practice session at the Moro Lorenzo Gym in Ateneo, Katipunan Quezon City.

Except for Ginebra’s Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand, who are still vacationing in the US, all members of the team were present.

However, Danny Seigle of San Miguel did not participate in the conditioning, weights and shoot-around as he’s still recovering from flu. "I’ll start tomorrow (today)," Seigle simply said.

Meanwhile, the door for possible drafting into the national team is still open for such players as Eric Menk, Kelly Williams, James Yap and Willie Miller.

The four were not selected by Reyes but there is a possibility that one of them could be tapped for future national team stint.

This is because the 15 players, including the three reserves will be good only until the FIBA-Asian Championship in Tokushima, Japan in July, Reyes said.

"Right now, we’ll just have the 12 plus 3 players for the FIBA-Asia tournament. But you know, that’s not to say that these are all the players for all the other competitions in the future," Reyes said.

"It doesn’t mean na sila rin ang sa Olympics if ever we get to qualify. Itong lineup na ito is only for the FIBA qualifier in July. That’s it. Beyond that, it’s going to be open to a lot of evaluations," added Reyes.

The four players were among the candidates for the RP team but were eliminated during the final selection by a committee.

Reyes has informed the national team members that their being in the squad is not a guarantee that they will be there till the Olympics.

"That’s what I’ve told the other guys to make sure that they give us a super-explosive conference," said Reyes whose scouts will be watching how these players perform in the current tournament.

full battle gear
03-14-2007, 12:37 PM
Chot: China not invincible
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/14/2007

RP coach Chot Reyes hopes the victories of Argentina and Greece over the United States will serve as inspiration in their campaign to beat China in the coming FIBA-Asia championship in Tokushima, Japan.

"We’ll try to be the best Philippine team ever. If we’re going to the Olympics, we have to beat China. To beat China, we have to play the same way Argentina and Greece played in beating the US," Reyes told his players at the end of their first practice session Monday at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center. Argentina beat the US in the Athens Olympics and Greece claimed the feat in the World Championship.

Reyes distributed to his players folders containing articles about the Philippines’ last participation in the Olympics, the country’s showings in the FIBA-Asia championship and its forerunner ABC, the roots of Philippine basketball and the fall of the US team among others.

Reyes asked his players not to lose it, saying those papers will be their bible.

"Read it. It’s easy reading and it’s going to be exciting. We will give you more articles, stats as we go along," Reyes told his players, hoping the final article would be their journey to the Olympics.

Reyes pointed to the US fall as the must-read for his players.

"If the US was beaten, China can be beaten," said Reyes.

Reyes hopes to arrange as many games as possible with the Chinese before the FIBA-Asia championship in July.

"We have to be familiar with their game. That’s the way to do it," said Reyes.

Chances are the RP squad and some members of the Chinese team will see each other at the AIB camp in Carson, California. Reyes and his team depart for the US March 29.

"I heard the Chinese are also booked at the camp we’re attending," said Reyes.

The Philippines needs to finish first or second in the Tokushima joust to make it to the Beijing Games next year.

Other tough teams the Philippines has to hurdle are Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon, South Korea, Japan and Chinese Taipei. China finished first followed by Qatar and Jordan in the last Asian Games in Doha last year.

The Philippines has never missed the top four since the PBA has taken charge of the country’s participation in the Asiad starting in 1990.

The Nationals placed second in Beijing Asiad in 1990, fourth in Hiroshima in 1994, third in Bangkok in 1998 and fourth in Busan in 2002.

full battle gear
03-14-2007, 12:40 PM
No rest for Helterbrand

By TITO TALAO
www.mb.com.ph


JAYJAY HELTERBRAND, Ginebra’s firebrand point guard, needed just a few hours of rest after a long flight from South Carolina yesterday to put at ease somewhat the mind of national coach Chot Reyes.

Somewhat because Reyes’ national team is still one key player short of a complete RP lineup – Helterbrand’s backcourt partner, the electrifying Mark Caguioa – before it embarks on its quest to return Philippine basketball to the Olympic Games.

The Nationals last saw action in the Olympics in 1972 in Munich, the year Muslim terrorists called the "Black September Movement" scaled the walls of the Athletes Village and held hostage and later killed half a dozen Israeli athletes and coaches.

Under coach Ning Ramos and led by Robert Jaworski, the Filipinos finished 13th with three wins and six losses after eventual champion Russia. The United States, behind future NBA star Doug Collins, took the silver medal.

Helterbrand, the Philippine Cup Finals MVP, flew in at five in the morning, caught a quick nap, and was off to the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center by noon.

"He went through the whole thing," said Reyes. "Di na halos nagpahinga, didn’t excuse himself."

Reyes added: ‘Isa na lang ang problema ko."

Caguioa, the Best Player of the Conference winner, was supposed to arrive today from Los Angeles, but got tied up and won’t be joining national team practice earlier than Friday.

"He’s in Florida right now, as far as I know," said RP team assistant coach Aboy Castro. "I understand he’s trying to schedule a return flight to Manila sometime this week."

Castro was all praises for Helterbrand.

"It was like he didn’t miss a beat. I’m sure mas mararamdaman niya ang epekto ng ensayo tonight."

Everybody from Day One of practice Monday was present, including alternates Rico Villanueva of Red Bull and San Miguel’s Romel Adducul who has a game today.

San Miguel star forward Danny Seigle, who was nursing a fever two days ago, joined the three-hour drills, lifting weights for lower body strength and practice shooting three-pointers against the zone defense.

"Grabe ang pinawis," said Castro.

Welcoming Seigle were Asi Taulava, Renren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag of Talk ‘N Text, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull, SMB teammate Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, and Tony dela Cruz of Alaska.

Reyes and Helterbrand spoke to each other before team practice commenced.

"Inulit ko sa kanya yung mga sinabi ko kahapon, yung expectations and yung schedule," Reyes said. "He’s very excited; he’s really ready."

pablohoney
03-14-2007, 07:20 PM
GOOSE BUMPS !!!

hindi pa sila naglalaro officially but for me, nakaka inspire ang commitment ng players.. nakakataba ng puso...

GO PHILIPPINES* ;)

pachador
03-15-2007, 02:16 AM
why are they sending Same Ekwe with the Harbor team to the FIBA Club qualifier in Indonesia? if the goal of sending amateur players to the FIBA- club tournament is to get the amateur plays more experience, they should send Eman Samigue instead ! Secondly, Sam Ekwe will not be able to play in the ASEAN games in Bangkok sa december because of citizenship issue ! Hello ! What are they thinking? just winning in the FIBA-club tourney? they forget that the goal of sending the amateur team to the FIBA-Clubs is to gain experience and preparation for the ASEAN games in december ! sus ginoo....

full battle gear
03-16-2007, 01:39 PM
Chot fancies Williams for Reavis slot

The Philippine Star 03/16/2007

Coach Chot Reyes is looking at Sta. Lucia Fil-Am forward Kelly Williams to replace injured reserve player Rafi Reavis even as he bides his time to officially name his replacement to Rudy Hatfield in the 12-man roster of the Philippine team.

"If Reavis can’t join us due to his injury then we will replace him with Kelly Williams subject to the approval of the Sta. Lucia management," said Reyes.

The RP team coaching staff is still awaiting word from Reavis who has consulted his doctor in the United States. Reavis is nursing a shoulder injury.

"We’ll know his status whether he would undergo surgery on Saturday. There’s a slim possibility he may not be operated on. But if he goes under the knife, he’s out for the rest of the conference and he’s out of the national pool," said Ginebra coach Jong Uichico.

Reserves are asked to join the RP team training depending on their availability. But Rico Villanueva has been religiously attending the training, hoping to gain regular status in the national team.

Reyes, however, said they’re running out of time and may only bring 11 regulars in the US to attend a training camp.

"The US trip is mainly for training before SEABA, I would need the 12th man," said Reyes.

Hatfield begged off from the national team, citing conflict of schedules between the tournament and his wedding date and has since joined the Ginebra Kings in the current PBA Fiesta Cup.

"It would be a big honor for the Red Bull organization if Enrico is named to the national team. But at this point in time, it’s unfair to the team because we’ve prepared for the Fiesta Cup with Enrico in our scheme of things," said Red Bull governor and team manager Tony Chua.

"We’ll allow Enrico to play in SEABA but will not release him in the duration of the Fiesta Cup," Chua added.

Villanueva attends Red Bull’s 9-12 a.m. practice at the RFM gym then drives to the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center in Ateneo for the RP team training.

Romel Adducul, another RP team reserve, undergoes the same daily grind, attending San Miguel’s session in the morning then the RP team workout in the afternoon.

Mark Caguioa was to arrive from a brief vacation in the US yesterday and may join the RP team in training starting today. – Nelson Beltran

full battle gear
03-17-2007, 02:24 PM
Caguioa’s absence stalls training

By TITO TALAO
www.mb.com.ph


WITH ALL the talent at his disposal, Chot Reyes, coach of the Philippine basketball team, can’t wait for Ginebra’s Mark Caguioa to arrive from the United States.

"Kulang kami ng tao sa ensayo," said Reyes after national team practice yesterday at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center inside the Ateneo campus. "Apektado talaga pag walang dose. Ni hindi kami makapag-4-on-4 drill. Me masaktan lang ng kaunti, kulang na agad."

San Miguel forward Danny Seigle watched from a seat at sideline during scrimmage, clutching a strained hamstring muscle.

And Reyes might have prematurely ended a free-wheeling 5-on-5 defensive workout after a minor collision involving Talk ‘N Text’s Asi Taulava and Red Bull’s Rico Villanueva.

"Ideal number kung 15 yung nage-ensayo. At least, 12 man lang sana minimum," Reyes said. "Pagdating ni Caguioa, okey na."

Caguioa is set to join team practice on Monday.

No pressure is being put on them, Reyes said, to complete a 12-man lineup after Ginebra’s Rudy Hatfield begged off from the squad due to his forthcoming wedding.

"We’re concentrating on making a very good, solid 11," he said. "When the 12th player comes, then it’ll come. We’re actually prepared to go to war with 11 players, if necessary."

Villanueva, a reserve, joined regulars Ranidel de Ocampo, Kerby Raymundo, Renren Ritualo, Mick Pennisi, Jimmy Alapag, Tony dela Cruz, Jayjay Helterbrand, Dondon Hontiveros, Taulava and Seigle in the grueling weights session, shooting drills, scrimmage and stretching exercises, a commitment that impressed Reyes.

"To think that he came from a tough overtime game last night in the PBA, and he comes in here today and do all that," Reyes said.

Bulls management has reportedly indicated it is agreeable to lending their prized center to the national team for the coming Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) tournament in Ratchaburi, Thailand, but not for the FIBA-Asia men’s championship in Tokushima, Japan.

"That’s our dilemma," said Reyes, who was said to be inclined to replace Hatfield with Villanueva.

With Red Bull’s position, Reyes is now looking at other options, including Sta. Lucia Realty’s No. 1 draft pick Kelly Williams.

The May SEABA tilt is the qualifying tournament for the August FIBA-Asia competition, while the latter will pick the continent’s two representatives to the Beijing Olympics next year.

full battle gear
03-20-2007, 10:44 AM
FOR U.S. TRIP
Chot makes do with 11 cagers

By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 02:14am (Mla time) 03/20/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Chot Reyes says he would love to have Kelly Williams in the Philippine team, but thinks that the timing may not sit well with his Philippine Basketball Association team, Sta. Lucia Realty.

“We don’t know how feasible it would be (for Sta. Lucia) if we pull him (Williams) out at this time,” Reyes said at the end of an energized three-hour practice session Monday at the Moro Lorenzo gym in Loyola Heights subdivision, Quezon City.

“Besides, we’re not trying to rush things. We’ll make the final decision when we get back from the (United) States.”

Reyes said he would likely take just 11 players with him to Los Angeles for a grueling two-week training camp that begins at the end of the month after Rudy Hatfield begged off from joining the team. The Barangay Ginebra player’s replacement has not been named.

The team departs for California on March 29 and will stay there for 14 days.

They will return for the PBA All-Star break, proceed to Iran for the Asian Champions Cup from May 9 to 14, before competing in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association championship which they are expected to rule in Thailand.

Reyes said that Rafi Reavis would have taken Hatfield’s spot, but the Ginebra center is set to go under the knife on Tuesday to fix a shoulder injury.

While Reyes had named Reavis and two other big men as alternates -- Enrico Villanueva and Rommel Adducul -- he said the “depth charge” on the position originally for Hatfield is reserved for Reavis first, Williams second and then either Marc Pingris or Anthony Washington.

Meanwhile, Mark Caguioa joined the team practice for the first time Monday. He was a little off after a three-week layoff but was in high spirits despite leaving his sick mother in the States.

“I would have wanted to take care of her for a longer time,” Caguioa told the Philippine Daily Inquirer, parent company of INQUIRER.net. “But I also would like to come home and show everyone that I love playing for my country.”

full battle gear
03-20-2007, 10:47 AM
Villanueva torn between duties to flag or ballclub
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/20/2007

Enrico Villanueva couldn’t be faulted if he sounds not too keen in getting a regular spot in the Philippine team roster to be sent to the SEABA championship in Thailand in May and the FIBA-Asia championship in Japan in July.

For Villanueva is in a bind and is likely to miss vital sessions of the RP team training as he needs to attend to his duties with mother club Red Bull in the PBA Fiesta Cup.

"It’s no problem attending two practices. My concern is joining the RP team not knowing what to do on the court since I have missed a lot of sessions" said Villanueva.

With his predicament, Villanueva said he wouldn’t be surprised if he were to lose the spot to another player.

The 6-foot-5 behemoth said he also understands Red Bull’s decision not to release him from the team’s roster in the ongoing PBA tourney. Red Bull is ready to loan Villanueva to the RP team only during the SEABA joust.

"It’s a tough position because I feel I may find it hard to adjust to the RP team system," said Villanueva.

Among the RP team activities he would likely miss is a two-week training in the AIB camp in Carson City, California. The Nationals are set to leave the country March 29.

RP team coach Chot Reyes is eyeing Villanueva to take over the spot of Rudy Hatfield who begged off from playing for the team due to conflict with his long-planned wedding.

Reyes is also looking to tap Sta. Lucia rookie Kelly Williams to replace Rafi Reavies as an RP team reserve.

In worst case scenario, Reyes said he might be forced to prepare an 11-man team for the SEABA tourney.

Villanueva said he’s leaving his fate to the RP team coaching staff although he insists his desire to play for flag and country.

"I’ll continue to practice with my ball club and the RP team and just see what happens," said Villanueva.

The former Ateneo star has donned the national colors in the 1998 Asian youth championship in India and in last year’s FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Manila.

full battle gear
03-20-2007, 10:48 AM
Villanueva hopes to make it to RP team

By Waylon Galvez
www.mb.com.ph


THE PAST week was a hectic one for Red Bull center Enrico Villanueva but he’s not complaining.

Since the Philippine team began practicing last Monday, the 6-foot-6 Villanueva has been dividing his time with the Nationals and his mother club.

"Ganun talaga," said the 6-foot-6 center who is eager to play for the RP Team but might be dropped because his training with the Nationals runs conflict with the schedule of his mother club.

"Nakakahinayang lang kung sakaling hindi ako mapili," he added. "Kung hindi man, OK lang nasa Red Bull pa rin ako."

On one hand, Philippine coach Chot Reyes seems inclined in tapping Sta. Lucia Realty’s high-flying Fil-American forward Kelly Williams to take the place of Rudy Hatfield.

Hatfield begged off from joining the RP team because of his scheduled wedding in July.

Villanueva was actually named by Reyes to the reserve list together with Romel Adducul of San Miguel Beer and Rafi Reavis of Barangay Ginebra.

Team insiders said that Reyes was seriously considering Villanueva, but since there’s a conflict with Red Bull, Williams might take Hatfield’s position.

Red Bull team manager Tony Chua denied reports that he would only allow Villanueva to be part of the team for just one competition, the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) championship in May in Thailand.

"Siyempre, kapag kinuha ni Chot si Rico, all the way na ‘yan to Japan, hindi sa isa lang na tournament," Chua said.

Red Bull had indicated that it will only allow Villanueva to train for the RP team as long as the PBA will allow him for the team.

"There’s no final decision yet. Nag-uusap pa. Open naman kami sa discussion eh," he added.

Except for the reserves, regular members of the national squad were pulled out from their respective ballclubs, a move unanimously approved by the PBA Board of Governors to give them time to prepare for the coming international meets.

The nationals are set to leave for Los Angeles, California USA on Mar. 26 to attend a training camp.

The Nationals are hoping to earn a spot in next year’s Olympics in Beijing and end a 35-year absence or since the country last qualified for the event during the 1972 Munich Games.

full battle gear
03-20-2007, 10:49 AM
Caguioa arrives, joins RP training

By Tito Talao
www.mb.com.ph


MARK CAGUIOA flew in from the States early yesterday in time for the national team’s 1-4 p.m. practice and for the unveiling of Asi Taulava’s new haircut.

Caguioa, Ginebra’s electrifying shooting guard and the PBA Philippine Cup’s Best Player, says he liked both – the feel of playing for the country and Taulava’s closely-cropped summer look.

"Hindi ko nga nakilala noong dumating ako kanina because he was facing the wall. Sabi ko ‘Who’s that?’" Caguioa said, laughing. "But I like his hair. It looks really clean. Pang-RP team talaga."

Taulava, whose flowing blonde locks were his signature with the Talk ‘N Text Phone Pals, says he had his hair done by a local barber for R150.

"I had my eyes closed all the time," he said, adding he preferred scissors over clippers.

"The last time I had my hair done using clippers, I ended up with a Tony dela Cruz haircut," he said.

Dela Cruz, the Alaska Aces hotshot, wears his hair ultra-short.

Caguioa arrived at 11 in the morning after a 14-hour flight from Los Angeles, took a hot shower and hailed a cab to practice.

"My car wouldn’t start," he said, "kaya nag-taxi na lang ako."

He appeared a little off during scrimmage, clanked a few jumpers and missed a couple of free throws. But he huffed and hustled during every transition, and was blending well when national coach Chot Reyes called it day before 4 p.m.

"I want to give my 110 percent because I gotta show why I was selected," Caguioa said. "I’m putting pressure on myself para di mawala ang gigil ko sa game."

His ailing mother, Remy, 51, was what kept Caguioa from joining the RP team earlier.

"Nag-collapse siya from low blood pressure and I had to look after her. Nasa ospital pa nga siya noong umalis ako. They’re doing more tests on her."

Caguioa had wanted to stay with his father, Cadoy, and two younger brothers at her mother’s bedside until the arrival of the nationals to Los Angeles at the end of the month for a two-week camp.

"I could’ve waited for them in States, pero trabaho ‘to, e," he said. "Kaya bumalik na rin ako."

Reyes had his first complete practice since preparation began on March 12.

"Of course, I’m very happy, but it’s no big deal because we knew he’d be coming in a little late," Reyes said, adding no decisions have yet been made on who toname in Rudy Hatfield’s place as the team’s 12th member.

"We’ll probably wait until we return before we decide," Reyes said.

full battle gear
03-27-2007, 11:15 AM
RP five leaves early to catch NBA game


Inquirer
Last updated 02:32am (Mla time) 03/27/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippines-San Miguel basketball team departs Thursday for a two-week camp in Carson City and to be able to secure tickets for the Lakers-Suns NBA game on April 8 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

“That’s the plan, and the players are trying very hard to get tickets even through the Internet,” said national coach Chot Reyes, who already has two tickets courtesy of Tex Winters, assistant to Lakers coach Phil Jackson and architect of the triangle offense from their Chicago Bulls days.

To watch Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns is what the national team is actually looking forward to, said Reyes. “It’s not so much Kobe Bryant and the Lakers, because it’s the Suns’ game that we want to pattern ours.”

full battle gear
03-27-2007, 11:16 AM
RP quintet wants to learn from Nash, Suns

The Philippine Star 03/27/2007

The RP-San Miguel basketball team, raring to catch Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns play, is working double time to secure tickets for the LA Lakers-Suns game in the NBA on April 8 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

"That’s the plan, and the players are trying very hard to get tickets even through the Internet," said national coach Chot Reyes, who already has two courtesy of Tex Winters, assistant to Lakers coach Phil Jackson and architect of the triangle offense from their Chicago Bulls days.

To watch Nash and the Suns is what the national team is actually looking forward to, said Reyes.

"It’s not so much Kobe Bryant and the Lakers, because it’s the Suns’ game that we want to pattern ours."

The Suns are currently the No. 2 top team in the NBA, having clinched the Pacific Division title with a 52-17 (win-loss) record, next to Southwest Division pacesetter Dallas Mavericks (58-11).

The Nationals depart for a two-week camp in Carson City on Thursday as it starts its buildup for the SEABA tournament in Thailand in May and the FIBA-Asian Men’s Championship in Japan in July.

Reyes, however, added that they are also looking forward to meeting with the Lakers, currently on a five-win streak.

"We’re also trying to arrange a meeting with the Lakers through Tex but it will depend of course on the mood of Phil," said Reyes, referring to LA Lakers coach Phil Jackson.

The RP team’s schedule is hectic, starting at 7:30 in the morning when the Nationals leave Holiday Inn-Torrance for the short walk to the training center, and lasting up to 7:30 at night, Monday to Saturday.

The players have Sunday off.

The day starts with a two-hour skills work followed by an hour break for lunch. Next is a two-hour session for lifting weights and conditioning, a 60-minute second skills drill, capped by a two-hour scrimmage with teams from the National Basketball Development League.

Individual skills training, team bonding and the opportunity to play versus tough competition in scrimmages are what Reyes hopes to achieve for the team in the course of the two-week camp.

full battle gear
03-27-2007, 11:17 AM
RP cagers hope to learn from Suns-Lakers game

www.mb.com.ph


FEVERISH WORK is in progress for the RP-San Miguel basketball team, which departs Thursday for a two-week camp in Carson City, to be able to secure tickets for the Lakers-Suns NBA game on April 8 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

"That’s the plan, and the players are trying very hard to get tickets even through the internet," said national coach Chot Reyes, who already has two courtesy of Tex Winters, assistant to Lakers coach Phil Jackson and architect of the triangle offense from their Chicago Bulls days.

"We’re also trying to arrange a meeting with the Lakers through Tex but it will depend of course on the mood of Phil," said Reyes.

To watch Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns is what the national team is actually looking forward to, said Reyes. "It’s not so much Kobe Bryant and the Lakers, because it’s the Suns’ game that we want to pattern ours."

The RP team’s schedule is hectic, starting at 7:30 in the morning when the nationals leave Holiday Inn-Torrance for the short walk to the training center, and lasting up to 7:30 at night, Monday to Saturday. The players have Sunday off.

The day starts with a two-hour skills work followed by an hour break for lunch. Next is a two-hour session for lifting weights and conditioning, a 60minute second skills drill, capped by a two-hour scrimmage with teams from the National Basketball Development League.

Individual skills training, team bonding and the opportunity to play versus tough competition in scrimmages are what Reyes hopes to achieve for the team in the course of the two-week camp.

Red Bull center Rico Villanueva, an alternate in the national team, said he is impressed with the progress of his teammates.

"May mga araw na nagi-skip ako ng praktis pag may laro sa PBA pero pag balik ko, ang dami na agad nilang ginagawang bago na masarap gawin," he said.

Villanueva, the likely replacement for Ginebra’s Rudy Hatfield in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association tournament in Ratchaburi, Thailand in May, and the FIBA-Asia men’s championship in Tokushima, Japan late in July, will not be able to join the RP team in the Carson City basketball camp but has no regrets.

"Okey lang, concentrate ako sa Red Bull," he said.

He, however, holds out hope a break in the Bulls’ schedule could open long enough for him to join the nationals.

"Kung matapos na yung conference o kaya mag-outright semifinals kami, kung may chance baka puwede akong makasama sa RP team," he said. "Pero wala pa kaming pinag-uusapan ng Red Bull. Hoping lang ako."

Hatfield begged off from the national team due to his coming wedding which will coincide with the Tokushima competition, the qualifying tournament for the Beijing Olympics in August next year.

full battle gear
03-29-2007, 11:21 AM
IN HUDDLE
Caguioa: RP 5 has winning attitude

By Beth Celis
Inquirer
Last updated 06:28am (Mla time) 03/29/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- Ginebra cager Mark Caguioa was lying on the bench when we arrived at the Moro Lorenzo gym where the national team was having its last workout prior to its departure for Carson City in Los Angeles.

It was the eve of the US trip and the team was undergoing one of the toughest conditioning exercises to test their fitness.

By the time they finished the running drills, Mark was out of breath, nauseous, and his knees were giving in.

“It was a hard workout, Mark will just catch his breath, rest a while and he’ll join you for the interview,” said Mark’s manager Danny Espiritu who happened to be there.

* * *

I was actually wary of interviewing Mark since he has a reputation of not being too nice to the press.

They say he’s rude and couldn’t care less what people say or think of him.

I decided to suspend judgment, however, until I had personally talked to him. Being the best player of the Philippine Basketball Association today and probably the most popular at that, I wanted to know what makes him tick.

* * *

Mark the Spark was fully energized when he joined us for the television interview in an air-conditioned room.

I did not detect any of the negative traits. He was very nice and polite and even had a keen sense of humor. He said we could talk about anything that struck my fancy. He had nothing to hide.

Naturally, I took him up on the offer. I asked if he’s about to follow the footsteps of teammate Rudy Hatfield who is tying the knot this August.

Mark said that while he’s very happy with Lauren, his girlfriend of three years, they have not made any nuptial plans as yet. But one of these days, they might.

“Lauren has been taking very good care of me. I have no eyes for any other girl,” Mark said.

* * *

Mark said he’s often mistaken for a snob because he’s not “palabati”.

“Having lived in the United States, I don’t know the people I have to greet or pay homage to even if I bump into them. I’m not a snob, but I’m not plastic either. I won’t greet you just for the sake of greeting you.”

All throughout the interview which lasted for more than 30 minutes, Mark spoke in fluent Tagalog. You can see this for yourself when the portion is aired over RPN 9’s Newswatch on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. and Friday, same time.

* * *

No, he does not get “pikon” (touchy) when fans tease him as an Allan K look-alike.

“I guess they say that because we’re both pango. But aren’t most of us Filipinos? I only look pango from this angle, but not in this,” he said, turning to his side.

I agreed.

* * *

When it comes to his career, Mark is very professional, dedicated and serious.

And he feels very optimistic about the Philippine team’s forthcoming international assignments. While he admits he has no idea of the caliber of the opposition in the FIBA-Asia Men’s championship, he feels we can beat anybody, “if we put our hearts and mind into it.”

“The team has a winning attitude,” he said, as he pointed out that he, for one, will never strive for anything less than the championship.

“If you’re only aiming for second or third place, might as well not play at all.”

full battle gear
03-29-2007, 11:22 AM
RP five boosts SBP grassroots project

By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 03:48am (Mla time) 03/29/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The all-star national quintet made up of Philippine Basketball Association millionaires leaves for the United States Thursday night to embark on a two-week training camp in Los Angeles.

The team is bidding to crash into the 2008 Beijing Olympics through the Seaba championship in May and the FIBA-Asia in July.

As a way of showing their gratitude, the players and the coaching staff have decided to donate their training allowances from the Philippine Sports Commission -- amounting to close to P200,000 -- to the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas’ grassroots program.

“It’s a parting gift from us, one of our ways of helping sports development and the other athletes,” said RP team coach Chot Reyes.

“To a man, our thinking is ‘we’re not doing this for the money, we’re doing this for the country.’”

Leaving with Reyes are Asi Taulava, Renren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag of Talk ‘N Text, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, Tony dela Cruz of Alaska, and Jayjay Helterbrand and Mark Caguioa of Ginebra, assistant coach Aboy Castro and Dennis Aenlle, the strength and conditioning coach.

The team leaves at around 10 p.m. and will arrive in Los Angeles at around 6 p.m. on Friday.

They will be based in Carson City where they will work out at the Abunassar Impact Basketball training camp, which has among its clients NBA superstars Kevin Garnett and Chauncey Billups.

“We’ll rest (on Thursday) and go to work on Friday and Saturday,” said Reyes after Wednesday’s abbreviated practice at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center in Quezon City. “Sunday is off, then we’ll go all the way again.”

Practice was cut short by an hour, Reyes said, to “give the players a day and a half to take care of their last-minute things.” Call time at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport is at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

full battle gear
03-29-2007, 11:24 AM
Nat’l cagers give up PSC allowance
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 03/29/2007

Members of the all-pro RP basketball team have decided to waive their monthly allowance from the Philippine Sports Commission before their departure for a two-week camp in Carson City, California today.

Led by head coach Chot Reyes, the Nationals depart on the 10 p.m. Philippine Airlines flight straight for Los Angeles and are expected to arrive at 6 p.m. Thursday.

The Nationals decided to give up their PSC subsidy and instead donate it to other Filipino athletes in a luncheon meeting with BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny Pangilinan Monday.

"It’s their small way of saying we just wanted to help. It’s not about the money but about restoring pride and honor of Philippine basketball," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

Considered as elite national athletes, Asi Taulava and company are entitled to P13,000 monthly allowance each from the PSC from the time they started training and to the time they compete in the Tokushima joust in July. The entire allowance amounts to about P200,000.

"No less than PSC chairman Butch Ramirez reminded them of their allowance from the government. The money is good, but they decided to give it to others. The PBA supports their very laudable effort," Eala said.

An 11-man RP-San Miguel basketball team will undergo a two-week camp in Carson City, California.

full battle gear
03-29-2007, 11:25 AM
RP team leaves for 2-week US training

www.mb.com.ph


AN 11-MAN RP-San Miguel basketball team, slightly low in ceiling but high in expectation, leaves tonight for a two-week camp in Carson City, California, 17 days after it first reassembled to resume an interrupted quest to return to the Olympic Games next year.

Led by head coach Chot Reyes, the Nationals depart on the 10 p.m. Philippine Airlines flight straight for Los Angeles and are expected to arrive at 6 p.m. Thursday.

With him are players Asi Taulava, Renren Ritualo and Jimmy Alapag of Talk ‘N Text, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, Tony dela Cruz of Alaska, and Jayjay Helterbrand and Mark Caguioa of Ginebra.

Also in the trip are assistant coach Aboy Castro and Dennis Aenlle, strength and conditioning coach. Six-foot-six alternate center Rico Villanueva of Red Bull will not be joining the squad. A bus to be made available by Joe Abunassar, director of the Abunassar Impact Basketball training facility, will pick them up from the airport for the 45-minute drive to Holiday Inn-Torrance.

The camp, located across the boundary in Carson City, is a five-minute brisk walk from the hotel. Abunassar is the personal coach of NBA stars Kevin Garnett and Chauncey Billups, among others.

"We’ll rest and go to work on Friday and Saturday," said Reyes after yesterday’s abbreviated practice at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center. "Sunday is off, then we’ll go all the way again."

Practice was cut short by an hour, Reyes said, to "give the players a day and a half to take care of their last-minute things."

Call time at the Ninoy Aquino International is at 7:30 tonight. The shortened drills and scrimmages came not without a price.

Helterbrand and Caguioa threw up after the grueling session from the heat and fatigue, with Caguioa, the PBA Philippine Cup best player, having dizzy spells.

"Takbuhan yung huli namin kaya siguro medyo nahilo ako," he said. "Pero mas malamig naman sa L.A. kaya makukundisyon na’ko don."

Hontiveros and De Ocampo, the last ones to leave the Ateneo facility, shared the view that the AIB camp will do wonders in bringing them closer for the crucial mission ahead, individually and as a team.

"Magandang test ito sa’min dahil mage-gauge agad kung nasaang level na yung team," said Hontiveros.

"Ngayon pa lang ako makaka-experience ng ganitong training kaya alam kong makakabuti sa’kin," De Ocampo said.

The nationals had dinner with telecommunications tycoon Manny V. Pangilinan, president of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, and PBA Commissioner Noli Eala Monday night, and lunch with San Miguel Phairman Eduardo ‘Danding’ Cojuangco and SMC President Ramon S. Ang the following day.

It was in Pangilinan’s presence at Pacific Plaza in Makati that the nationals, from the coaches to the players, pledged to donate their entire allowance from the Philippine Sports Commission – amounting to about R200,000 up until the July FIBA-Asia men’s championship in Tokushima, Japan – to the SBP for its grassroots development program.

"It’s a parting gift from us, one of our ways of helping sports development and the other athletes," said Reyes. "To a man, our thinking is ‘we’re not doing this for the money, we’re doing this for the country.’"

full battle gear
04-02-2007, 11:55 AM
RP 5 will do the impossible, says Reyes
By Joaquin Henson
The Philippine Star 04/02/2007

Coach Chot Reyes said the other day his mindset for the Philippine national basketball team, training at the Joe Abunassar impact camp in Carson City near Los Angeles, is to do the impossible in the gym now to prepare to do the impossible later.

For five months, the team will be getting battle-ready for the chance to play in the Beijing Olympics. The moment of truth will come in the FIBA-Asia Championships on July 28-Aug. 5 in Tokushima, Japan, where powerhouse China – assured of an Olympic ticket as host nation – is the defending titlist.

Reyes, assistant coach Aboy Castro, trainer Dennis Aenlle and 11 players left Thursday for a two-week camp personally supervised by Abunassar in Carson City. Abunassar is credited for developing the skills of stars like Kevin Garnett, Chauncey Billups, Tayshaun Prince, Chris Duhon, Andrei Kirilenko and Sebastian Telfair.

The morning after arriving in the US, Reyes took the team to practice for two hours at the Home Depot Center. Two more hours of practice in the afternoon rounded out a grueling first day at camp.

"There was no way we should have gone as hard as we did after flying 12 hours and barely getting any sleep," said Reyes. "But all through the next five months, a lot of people are going to say we couldn’t or shouldn’t do a lot of things – we shouldn’t play in SEABA, we couldn’t win FIBA-Asia, we couldn’t beat China, we couldn’t get to the Olympics.

"That’s why on the first day of practice, I wanted to start doing things other people say we shouldn’t be doing. Let’s not wait until July to do the things people say we couldn’t do."

Reyes said beating China seems to be a mission impossible but he’s not resigned to it.

"We’ll never know until we try," he said. "We shouldn’t wait until July to start doing the impossible. We need to start now to do the impossible, even in little ways. Because when we start training our bodies and minds to do the impossible, to do the things we shouldn’t be doing today then we will be better prepared to do the impossible later."

Reyes said he’s impressed by the dedication and effort the players showed on the first day at camp. "I’m proud to be here with you," he told the players. "Great work. Get your rest and let’s come back and do even better tomorrow."

In the morning session, Reyes split the 11-man squad into guards and bigs. Jimmy Alapag, Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa, RenRen Ritualo and Dondon Hontiveros began with performance movement training followed by a series of individual drills in shooting, footwork, balance and ballhandling. The big men – Asi Taulava, Ranidel de Ocampo, Mick Pennisi, Kerby Raymundo, Danny Seigle and Tony de la Cruz – hit the weights and did flexibility training. Then, the guards went to the weight room and the bigs went through the individual skills modules.

In the afternoon, the team did more shooting, ballhandling and footwork exercises then broke into 3-on-3 drills focusing on ballscreens, hand-off executions and reading the defense. Interspersed were agility drills and a lot of running.

"To say the day was exhausting is an understatement," said Reyes. "That’s why I championed their efforts at the end of the session."

full battle gear
04-02-2007, 11:59 AM
RP 5 buckles down to work

www.mb.com.ph


CARSON CITY, California – The 11-man RP-San Miguel team had their baptism of fire at the Abunassar Impact Basketball camp Saturday, plunging straight into practice after barely six hours of sleep since their arrival at Holiday Inn Torrance at around 10:30 the previous night.

The day started with the team split into guards and ‘‘bigs’’ for the morning sessions.

The guards – Jimmy Alapag, Jayjay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa, Renren Ritualo and Dondon Hontiveros started with performance movement training followed by a rigorous series of individual skills – shooting, footwork, balance, and ball-handling for two hours.

The big men – Asi Taulava, Mick Pennisi, Tony dela Cruz, Kerby Raymundo, Ranidel de Ocampo and Danny Seigle – hit the weights and ended with flexibility training.

The players then switched regimen, with the guards going into weights and flexibility and the bigs going through the individual skills module. Lunch was at 11:45 p.m.

After a short rest, the nationals returned to the Home Depot Center for the afternoon session, consisting mostly of more shooting, footwork and ball-handling drills before progressing to 3-on-3’s that focused on ball screen and hand-off execution and reading the defense.

Agility exercises and running were also completed before the team ended with executing run-outs on 5-on-0 sets.

"To say the day was exhausting is an understatement," said national coach Chot Reyes via email. "That’s why I championed their efforts at the end of the session."

Reyes told his players after the grueling ice-breaking session: "There was no way we should have gone as hard as we did today after flying 12 hours and barely getting any sleep last night. In fact, you could argue that it was unfair. I agree. We shouldn’t have done this."

But he also stressed their labor in the next five months will determine their worthiness in the FIBA-Asia championship in Tokushima, Japan, the pre-Olympic qualifying tournament in the region.

"A lot of people think it’s impossible to beat China, that we can’t make it to the Olympics. We’ll never know until we try," Reyes said. "But we shouldn’t wait until July to start doing the impossible. We need to start today, even in little ways. Because when we start training our bodies and minds to do the impossible; to do the things we shouldn’t be doing today, then we will be better prepared to do the impossible later."

pachador
04-04-2007, 01:45 AM
RP 5 shows fine form

Malaya April 4, 2007

CARSON CITY, CA. – The RP-San Miguel team rallied from 18 point down against the Bryon Russel-led ABA Hollywood Fame en route to winning its first tune-up game 98-81 Monday noon at the Home Depot Center.

The nationals missed their first four shots and quickly trailed by double digits as Jimmy Johnson, 6-foot-5 Billy Knight, 6’6 Mo Spillers, 6’9 Ron Mingo and the 6’7 Russel, a former Lakers player, dominated inside and surprised the visitors with their deft outside shooting.

Fame further hammered the Filipinos with 6’9 John Nortridge, who combined with Jamaal Kendricks in opening an 18-point lead early in the second quarter.

RP coach Chot Reyes quickly pulled his team together as Asi Taulava, Danny Seigle, Mick Pennisi, Renren Ritualo and Jayjay Helterbrand started connecting.

Ritualo and Pennisi then engineered a scorching rally that wiped out the deficit as Fame went into the locker room holding a 51-50 edge.

The second half was RP-San Miguel all the way, with Pennisi and Dondon Hontiveros delivering long-distance bombs and Helterbrand shredding the Fame defense in setting up Tony dela Cruz at the perimeter.

The Americans trailed by 10 at the start of the fourth quarter and went into a full-court press which the nationals easily broke down with superb ball-handling.

A rematch is set Tuesday with Russel, best remembered as the Utah Jazz defender faked out of position by Michael Jordan, then still with the Chicago Bulls, for that picture-perfect winning jumper, vowing revenge, as our superior ballhandling rendered their fullcourt press useless.

"More impressive than our shooting, conditioning, and quickness was the fact that we did not give up even when we were down by 18 early," said Reyes. "We struggled early, but the players found a way to overcome the soreness and fatigue they felt from the morning’s workouts"

Reyes added the nationals "communicated very effectively, and their genuine concern for each other was inspiring. Overall, I am quite satisfied with this, our first game ever as a unit."

pachador
04-04-2007, 01:59 AM
some insights:

1.) Hollywood fame is ranked average or # 12 in the American Basketball Association(ABA), a minor league with 24 teams. The coach of Hollywood Fame is a Filipino-american, Hernando Planells whose mother is from Cagayan de Oro (my place of birth too). His father is from Espana.

2.) Another ABA team that Philippines beat was Long Beach Jam during the 2005 Las Vegas tournament.

3.) Beijing Aoshen is a tall mainland chinese pro club team that also competes in the ABA, and they are ranked # 19. This chinese team got massacred by the San Miguel Selecta RP team 80-65 of Chot Reyes back in 2005 during the Las Vegas Pro tournament. At that time they played agianst the RP team, the Aoshen was an all-chinese team with* average height of 6-7, including* 6'10"* Li Wei 6'10" Zheng Jia , 6-9 Liu Guang, 6-8 Huang Hai Bei, 6-8 Jin Xin, 6-9 Zhen Sheng Jia, 6-6 Zhao Hua Nan, 6-6 Yan Song Tao, 6-6 Hou Nan and 6-4 Duan Chao. Presently, the same Aoshen team has 4 american imports while competing in the ABA.

Here are some relevant links:
http://www.aoshenbasketball.com/
http://www.aoshenbasketball.com/standings.html
http://www.aoshenbasketball.com/roster.html

Bennie Bangag
04-04-2007, 06:32 AM
mods, please merge this thread with the existing PBA-backed national team thread.

pachador
04-04-2007, 10:41 PM
I heard from a friend that Philippine team lost by more than 20 points to Hollywood Fame in the 2nd game. I wish I could watch the games but I got work monday to friday. I'll try to get into that facility this sabado . hopefully there will be a another game by that time....

gameface_one
04-05-2007, 09:27 AM
US team rips RP-SMC five to even series
mb.com.ph





CARSON CITY, California — The Hollywood Fame extracted the revenge that Bryon Russel promised yesterday, calling in key reinforcements to pummel RP-San Miguel, 100-76, at the Home Depot Center today.


Showing up with a pair of super guards, the Fame capitalized on the poor shooting and creeping fatigue of the Nationals, as they evened their series at 1-1.

Russel, the NBA veteran who last played for the Los Angeles Lakers, has vowed to get back at the Nationals after dropping the opener of their exhibition series 98-81.

RP-San Mig opened well with Danny Seigle catching fire early. But the Fame came back hard, ending the first quarter with a 28 -16 lead.

Numbed from their 8 a.m. weights session and 9 a.m. court training, the Nationals failed to produce the comeback run they successfully engineered yesterday, sputtering against the hard-charging Americans in trailing 54-36 at the half.

Asi Taulava, Mick Pennissi, Mark Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand and Seigle sparked a minor rally at the start of the second half, but the Fame A had an answer this time courtesy of Lamar Gayle and Mo Spillers who countered with a 10-2 run for a 76-55 advantage going to the final period.

Team Pilipinas mounted a last-ditch effort to turn the game around midway in the fourth, but again the Fame struck with guards Dino Tanner and Kevin Bradley draining clutch 3-pointers to smother the rally.

Scores:

HOLLYWOOD FAME 100 – Gayle 21, Tanner 17, Bradley 15, Spillerse 14, Russel 9, Banks 9, Aftalion 5, Whyte 4, Williams 4, Anderson 2.

RP-SAN MIGUEL – Caguioa 15, Seigle 11, Taulava 10, Ritualo 8, Dela Cruz 6, Pennisi 6, Helterbrand 4, Alapag 4, Hontiveros 4, De Ocampo 4, Raymundo 4.

Quarters: 28-16; 54-36; 76-55; 100-76

pachador
04-07-2007, 01:15 PM
RP-SAN MIGUEL DOWNS CAL STATE-DOMINGUEZ* (Division II shool)
Caguioa shines in impressive win
Saturday, 07 April 2007*
CARSON CITY, CA – Fresh from a 24-hour respite, RP-San Miguel came back with a vengeance, crushing Cal State-Dominguez Hills, an NCAA Division-II school, 90-71, at the Home Depot Training Center Friday.

A different starting lineup comprised of Jayjay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa, Tony de la Cruz, Ranidel de Ocampo and Asi Taulava set the tone for the match, opening a 7-0 lead that appeared to surprise the Dominguez Hills Toros.

Caguioa finished with 22 points while Danny Seigle came off the bench with 14.

Behind their leader Jamel Barnes, the Toros closed the gap halfway through the period. But the Nationals’ second unit – Jimmy Alapag, Dondon Hontiveros, Kerby Raymundo, Mick Pennisi and Seigle – restored the advantage and set Team RP on the road to a 31-16 first quarter breakaway.

The Toros tried to rattle the Filipinos with a 1-3-1 defense, but Renren Ritualo, Hontiveros and Pennisi brought Cal-State right out of the zone with long-range bombs from beyond the arc.

The lead was 48-28 at the half, a bulge RP-San Miguel maintained at the end of three quarters, 70-50.

“Unlike the first two games when our mentality was just to compete and execute, we went into this game with the mindset that we were out to win,” said RP coach Chot Reyes.

“We practiced only until 12 noon yesterday, and got everyone back at 12 noon today, thus giving everyone a 24-hour break, and it showed in the energy. More than the win, what pleased me was our ball movement and the players' selflessness.”

The RP-San Miguel squad returns to the gym for its three-a-day practice Saturday.

“We’ll see how well we play with fatigue next game,” Reyes said.

The scores:

RP-SAN MIGUEL 90 – Caguioa 22, Seigle 16, De la Cruz 14, Pennisi 9, Raymundo 8, Taulava 6, Hontiveros 4, Ritualo 3, Alapag 3, De Ocampo 3, Helterbrand 2.

CAL STATE-DOMINGUEZ – Ward 16, Walton 14, Steed 10, Nibo 9, Barnes 6, Love 4, Isaac 4, Fowler 2, Ramey 2, Duhon 2, Johnson 0.

Quarters: 31-16; 48-28; 70-50; 90-71.


www.pba.ph

pachador
04-07-2007, 01:30 PM
one of the assistant coaches of Cal State - Dominguez Hills is Harry Bugarin, a Fil-Am

pachador
04-08-2007, 04:44 AM
Philippine team versus Hollywood Fame video . The video and pics shot by a kababayan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y15x_e0lTyE


and here's pictures of the Philippine team in action:

http://www.mygringos.com/viewthumb.php?ShowBizID=328

Kid Cubao
04-08-2007, 12:25 PM
thanks for the footage ;D

gameface_one
04-09-2007, 10:56 PM
The greatest team?
THE GAME OF MY LIFE By Bill Velasco
The Philippine Star 04/09/2007

In 1989, FIBA declared "open basketball," which allows professional players to participate in international amateur competitions, much like tennis did immeidately before then. Since that happened, the Philippines has sent five teams composed of PBA players (and the occasional amateur) to Asian-level competition, and has finished as high as second, and no less than fourth.

In the spirit of sacrifice for the Holy Week, we started a debate on the ANC daily sports talk show Hardball: in the open era, which Philippine team is the best of all time?

The first team was led by then-Añejo Rhum head coach Robert Jaworski, assisted by Norman Black. It featured Allan Caidic (Presto), Hector Calma (San Miguel Beer), Rey Cuenco (Añejo Rhum), Yves Dignadice (San Miguel Beer), Ramon Fernandez (San Miguel Beer), Dante Gonzalgo (Añejo Rhum), Samboy Lim (San Miguel Beer), Chito Loyzaga (Añejo Rhum), Ronnie Magsanoc (Formula Shell), Benjie Paras (Formula Shell), Alvin Patrimonio (Purefoods) and Zaldy Realubit (Presto). Four players were Beermen, a year after they won their Grand Slam, with Jaworski inserting former teammate and rival Mon Fernandez. The late Cuenco, along with Gonzalgo and Loyzaga, played for Jaworski. Purefoods center Jerry Codiñera was stricken with hepatitis weeks before the Games and replaced by Realubit. Nelson Asaytono and Bong Alvarez were part of the pool as alternates, but did not join the team to Beijing. After being blasted by China, 125-60, in the eliminations, the team defeated Japan in the crossover semifinals and made a valiant stand in the finals, and finished with a silver medal. Samboy Lim made the tournament’s Mythical Team.

In 1994, the San Miguel Beermen, coached by Norman Black, won the PBA All-Filipino Conference championship and earned the right to represent the country in the Asian Games in Hiroshima, Japan. The team was composed of the core of San Miguel, and reinforced by players from other teams: Marlou Aquino (Amateur), Dong Polistico (San Miguel Beer), Jerry Codiñera (Purefoods), Alvin Teng (San Miguel Beer), Alvin Patrimonio (Purefoods), Rey Evangelista (Purefoods), Kenneth Duremdes (Amateur), Allan Caidic (San Miguel Beer), Ato Agustin (San Miguel Beer), Franz Pumaren (San Miguel Beer), Hector Calma (San Miguel Beer), and Johnny Abarrientos (Alaska). The Philippines went on to finish fourth, with Caidic emerging the Asian Games basketball tournament’s top scorer.

In 1998, the PBA selection – coached by Tim Cone – was nicknamed the Centennial Team. The team included veterans Allan Caidic and Alvin Patrimonio, both sharing the distinction of being the only PBA players to represent the country in four Asian Games basketball tournaments since 1986. It also listed Andy Seigle (Mobiline), Jojo Lastimosa (Alaska), Dennis Espino (Sta. Lucia), Jun Limpot (Sta. Lucia), Vergel Meneses (Pop Cola), E.J. Feihl (Purefoods), Olsen Racela (San Miguel Beer), Marlou Aquino (Ginebra), Johnny Abarrientos (Alaska) and Kenneth Duremdes (Alaska).

The team played in the PBA Centennial Cup (where they placed last, as other teams had two imports each) and later played exhibition games against China’s national team and a selection of non-national team PBA All-Stars. The Nationals went on to win the 21st William Jones Cup International Basketball Tournament in Taiwan and took on a tough Midwest tour of the United States, facing very strong college teams along the way. The national team’s main goal was to win the Asian Games gold medal and thus reclaim Philippine basketball supremacy in Asia. The team started the tournament by winning four games in a row and finished with a 5-2 record, losing to China and Korea. The team salvaged a bronze medal by beating Kazakhstan.

In 2002, the Asian Games held in Busan, South Korea proved a very painful experience for the Philippines’ basketball campaign. Head coach Ron Jacobs was struck down by a stroke, and Jong Uichico stepped into his big shoes. The players were Noy Castillo (Purefoods), Olsen Racela (San Miguel Beer), Dondon Hontiveros (San Miguel Beer), Dennis Espino (Sta. Lucia), Mick Pennisi (Red Bull), Eric Menk (Ginebra), Danny Ildefonso (San Miguel Beer), Andy Seigle (Purefoods), Jeff Cariaso (Coca-Cola), Rudy Hatfield (Coca-Cola), Asi Taulava (Talk ‘N Text) and Kenneth Duremdes (Alaska).

The nationals were handed a heart-breaking loss to host South Korea in the semifinals, thanks to a freak buzzer-beating three-pointer by Lee Sang Min. The next day, the Philippines lost to Kazakhstan for the bronze medal. A lot of people forget that Jimmy Alapag was supposed to play on that team, but broke his hand in his first tune-up game in the PBA, and Danny Seigle tore his foot going up for a dunk a mere one week before the tournament.

The current national team is considered the most balanced of the five deployed so far, but they have yet to see action in an international tournament. Coached by Chot Reyes, the team is composed of Jimmy Alapag, Asi Taulava and Renren Ritualo of Talk ‘N Text, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Jayjay Helterbrand and Mark Caguioa of Ginebra, Tony dela Cruz of Alaska, Ranidel de Ocampo of Air21, Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods, Mick Pennisi of Red Bull. Alternates Enrico Villanueva, Romel Adducul, Rudy Hatfield and Rafi Reavis have not been named to the line-up permanently.

On Saturday, we break down and compare the strengths and weaknesses of each team.

cub
04-09-2007, 11:18 PM
Philippine team versus Hollywood Fame video . The video and pics shot by a kababayan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y15x_e0lTyE


and here's pictures of the Philippine team in action:

http://www.mygringos.com/viewthumb.php?ShowBizID=328







you got this from another site no? :)

pachador
04-09-2007, 11:52 PM
yes, of course, just search for it on youtube.


author=cub link=topic=1114.msg34661#msg34661 date=1176131935]


Philippine team versus Hollywood Fame video . The video and pics shot by a kababayan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y15x_e0lTyE


and here's pictures of the Philippine team in action:

http://www.mygringos.com/viewthumb.php?ShowBizID=328







you got this from another site no?* :)

pachador
04-12-2007, 01:35 AM
from PBA site and philstar:

National team beats ABA-USBL selection 98-74 last saturday . Fil-Am sensation 6'5" Gabe Norwood of powerhouse Division 1 George Mason University suited up for the National team just for this game. He may become the 12th member replacing Hatfield. if this happens, a lot of asian teams will be crying.

then yesterday, National team lost by 3 points only to Division I Cal State-Fullerton without Gabe Norwood who already flew back to his school. This is better performance so far than the 1998 centennial national team that lost to Division I american teams by 30 point blowouts.

Kid Cubao
04-12-2007, 08:22 AM
that's nice, gabe norwood made good his promise to play for the national team :)

full battle gear
04-12-2007, 12:02 PM
RP-San Mig unveils new prospect in 3rd victory


Inquirer
Last updated 04:11am (Mla time) 04/12/2007

CARSON CITY, CALIFORNIA -- Team Pilipinas, reinforced by a former US NCAA Final Four standout with Filipino roots, posted its third win in its training in the United States Wednesday, beating a selection of ABA/USBL players and aspiring pros, 98-74, at the Home Depot Center here.

The Philippines raced to a quick 12-0 lead as Mark Caguioa, inspired by the presence of his relatives, kicked off scoring along with Asi Taulava and Ranidel de Ocampo.

But it was the presence of Gabe Norwood that electrified the sparse crowd at the gym.

Norwood, whose late grandfather hails from Pangasinan and grandmother Frances Villoria from Camiling, Tarlac, entered the game in the second period and flashed an array of athletic dunks and pinpoint passes to the delight of his teammates and the crowd.

The 6-foot-5 Norwood played point guard for George Mason University, which advanced to last year’s NCAA Final Four. He flew in from Virginia and joined the Nationals in their practices Friday. He also practiced with the team Saturday morning before playing the same night.

Alternating between the point and off-guard spots, Norwood immediately made his presence felt via a thunderous slam off a behind-the-back pass from Jimmy Alapag early in the second quarter.

He also had six assists, prompting his teammates to give their “thumbs-up” on his potential as a probable national team member.

Norwood, Danny Seigle, Caguioa, Mick Pennisi and Kirby Raymundo conspired to tow RP to a commanding 58-42 advantage at halftime.

The Americans opened the third quarter with a 12-2 run to threaten at 60-54.

After a time-out, RP threw a surprise half-court trapping defense that led to successive baskets with Seigle scoring eight points to put RP comfortably back on top, 79-61.

The scores:
RP-SAN MIGUEL 98 -- Seigle 21, Caguioa 18, Pennisi 13, De Ocampo 11, Helterbrand 10, Taulava 8, Norwood 8, Raymundo 4, Alapag 4, Dela Cruz 2, Ritualo 2.
US SELECTION 74 -- Vincent 21, Givens 15, Bewer 10, Yamatz 8, Bryant 8, Meiller 4, Rivers 4, Lawrence 4, Hamilton 0.

full battle gear
04-12-2007, 12:08 PM
Reyes cites gains in US camp
SPORTING CHANCE By Joaquin M. Henson
The Philippine Star 04/12/2007

Coach Chot Reyes and the national basketball team return home Sunday after a grueling two-week impact camp supervised by training guru Joe Abunassar in Carson City.

Reyes said the gains in attending the camp were significant as the players got to sharpen their skills through the cutting-edge specific performance training and conditioning technology that is the hallmark of the Abunassar program.

If the proof of the pudding is in the eating, then the results attest to the team’s emergence as a force to reckon with. In practice games, the 11-man squad beat the ABA pro club Hollywood Fame, bannered by NBA veteran Bryon Russell, and the California State at Dominguez Hills varsity.

The other day, the Nationals lost a cliffhanger by three points to NCAA Division I contender California State at Fullerton – the school that produced San Antonio Spurs guard Bruce Bowen. Mick Pennisi would’ve sent the game into overtime but his triple try at the buzzer went in and out.

The game was held at 2 p.m. on a day that started with the team doing weights at 8 a.m. From the weights room, the players reported for court work at 9 a.m. then drilled with coach Don Casey on zone defense at 10:30. Reyes described the grind as the usual "killer sked."

Abunassar charged a discounted rate of $1,250 a player (compared to $25,000 for an NBA cager). The price was well worth it as the camp was the first step in setting the team on track for the SEABA championships on May 24-28 in Ratchaburi, Thailand, and the FIBA-Asia qualifiers for the Beijing Olympics on July 28-Aug. 5 in Tokushima, Japan.

Reyes said as a result of keeping together for two weeks, familiarity and bonding were now "very evident" among the players.

"We found out about Abunassar from Norman Black as this is the camp that Talk ’N’ Text and several Alaska players attended when it was still a part of the IMG (International Management Group) center in Florida," said Reyes.

"Korea’s Bang Soon Yung and five Chinese national players led by Yi Jianlian are the most prominent camp attendees from Asia, giving us an idea of how learning is helpful for the international game."

Reyes said Abunassar, who has spent eight years as a coach in the NCAA Division I level, personally tracked the development of each player with performance training specialist Kevin Elsey.

For two weeks, the team reported for workouts at the Home Depot Center gym which is equipped with three NBA regulation courts, 18 teaching stations, a state-of-the-art weight room and performance facility in a 125-acre complex. Abunassar operates a similar center in Las Vegas.

Giving the players a rest from the exhausting regimen, Reyes allowed a day off on their first Sunday. Jimmy Alapag, Tony de la Cruz, Asi Taulava and Mark Caguioa visited family in the Los Angeles area. Reyes drove to Las Vegas to visit his mother and mark his father’s first death anniversary. Ranidel de Ocampo and Pennisi, first-timers in the US, were taken for a tour by teammates familiar with the city sights.

Abunassar is an Indiana University graduate who is certified by the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He served in coach Joby Wright’s staff at the University of Wyoming for four seasons. Abunassar also worked with Bobby Knight’s teams at Indiana as manager.

"We make players better at all levels by covering every aspect of every physical and mental areas of the game," said Abunassar. "Two weeks in the program will completely change the way a player approaches his training and shape the remainder of his career. Performance training, corrective exercises, nutritional knowledge and an understanding of recovery are essential keys to improving on the court."

As director for basketball at IMG Academies, Abunassar developed a progra m for dedicated athletes. He revolutionized the way players worked out, employing a comprehensive multi-level system designed by physical therapists, athletic trainers and performance coaches.

"My program has everything to do with nutrition and performance because without that, the basketball isn’t going to be as effective," said Abunassar. "Skills development and performance advancements are the keys to offseason training for players of all ages. Our program is unparalleled and will produce fast results."

Among the NBA players who are Abunassar graduates are Chauncey Billups, Tayshaun Prince, Kevin Garnett, Al Harrington, Vince Carter, Erick Dampier, Sebastian Telfair and Jared Jeffries. Abunassar has worked with over 50 NBA cagers, including six All-Stars.

full battle gear
04-12-2007, 12:12 PM
RP five scores 3rd win

www.mb.com.ph


CARSON CITY, CA —Team Pilipinas posted win number 3 yesterday, beating a selection of ABA/USBL players and aspiring pros, 98-74, before a weekend crowd of close to 300 kababayans at the Home Depot Center here.

Starting with the same unit as last game, the Pinoys raced to a quick 12-0 lead, forcing the opposing coach to call an early timeout. Inspired by the presence of his relatives, Mark Caguioa opened up scoring with a 3-point shot, before Asi and Ranidel took turns attacking the hoop for that dozen-point spread.

The Americans came back strong behind CCA all-conference member Johntae Vincent and ABA veteran Phil Givens to close out first quarter scoring down by only 6, 30-24.

Shortly before the quarter ended, Gabe Norwood of George Mason University, whose late grandfather hails from Pangasinan and grandmother Frances Villoria is from Camiling Tarlac entered the game. The 6’5’ Norwood played point guard for GMU, which advanced to last year’s NCAA Final Four but failed to make it this year. Gabe flew in from Virginia and joined the Nationals in their 3-a-days last Friday. He also practiced with the team Saturday morning before playing the same night.

But the way he seamlessly blended in, you would think he ‘s been playing with the team for a long time. Alternating between the point and offguard spots, Norwood immediately made his presence felt via a thunderous slam off a behind the back pass from Jimmy Alapag early in the 2nd quarter that drove the pro-Pinoy crowd wild. Gabe went on to score on a variety of jumpers while running the offense and passing off for 6 assists, prompting his teammates to give their ‘thumbs-up’ on his potential as a probable national team member.

yungha
04-12-2007, 11:05 PM
re: Norwood - when coach chot didn't seem to feel the urgency to immediately replace hatfield, i had a feeling he would call on either norwood or japeth or maybe a surprise fil-am find ala kelly williams for national team duty. good thing norwood heeded the call of the flag. if he sticks around, we'll finally have that big point guard who can create mismatches all around. the chinese and maybe some of the arab countries may have swingmen to match up with norwood height-wise, but i doubt if these players are as polished or as skilled as gabe. with gabe, i like our chances of advancing to the olympics.

going further, if gabe embraces the opportunity to be a national team mainstay, let's not confine him to the PBA. let him develop his skills in europe.

going even further, if we do advance to the olympics next year, i expect coach chot to call on japeth.

gameface_one
04-14-2007, 09:43 PM
The greatest team? (Part 2)
THE GAME OF MY LIFE By Bill Velasco
The Philippine Star 04/14/2007

Looking back at the five national teams pooled by the PBA to play in Asian-level competitions, you’ll see the clear transition to the Fil-Am era in the last two teams. Having said that, you’ll also notice the recognition of the need to have impeccable outside shooting, a staple of international compeititon, given the shorter three-point line.

To refresh your memory, here are the rosters of our PBA Philippine teams:

1990: Caidic (Presto), Calma (San Miguel Beer), Cuenco (Añejo Rhum), Dignadice (San Miguel Beer), Fernandez (San Miguel Beer), Gonzalgo (Añejo Rhum), Lim (San Miguel Beer), Loyzaga (Añejo Rhum), Magsanoc (Formula Shell), Paras (Formula Shell), Patrimonio (Purefoods) and Realubit (Presto). Finish: second.

1994: Aquino (Amateur), Polistico (San Miguel Beer), Codiñera (Purefoods), Teng (San Miguel Beer), Patrimonio (Purefoods), Evangelista (Purefoods), Duremdes (Amateur), Caidic (San Miguel Beer), Agustin (San Miguel Beer), Pumaren (San Miguel Beer), Calma (San Miguel Beer), and Abarrientos (Alaska). Finish: fourth.

1998: Caidic, Patrimonio, Seigle (Mobiline), Lastimosa (Alaska), Espino (Sta. Lucia), Limpot (Sta. Lucia), Meneses (Pop Cola), Feihl (Purefoods), Racela (San Miguel Beer), Aquino (Ginebra), Abarrientos (Alaska) and Duremdes (Alaska). Finish: third.

2002: Castillo (Purefoods), Racela (San Miguel Beer), Hontiveros (San Miguel Beer), Espino (Sta. Lucia), Pennisi (Red Bull), Menk (Ginebra), Ildefonso (San Miguel Beer), Seigle (Purefoods), Cariaso (Coca-Cola), Hatfield (Coca-Cola), Taulava (Talk ‘N Text), Duremdes (Alaska). Finish: fourth.

2007: Alapag, Taulava and Ritualo of Talk ‘N Text, Seigle and Hontiveros of San Miguel Beer, Helterbrand and Caguioa of Ginebra, dela Cruz of Alaska, de Ocampo of Air21, Raymundo of Purefoods, Pennisi of Red Bull.

Let’s look at some key categories, and stack up the teams fantasy league style. If we could pluck them out of history, how would they do against each other?

Rebounding. Looking over the line-ups, the 2002 team had Asi Taulava, Mick Pennisi, Eric Menk, Danny Ildefonso and Andy Seigle, while 1994 squad had Marlou Aquino, Dong Polistico, Jerry Codiñera and Alvin Teng, and was skewed for rebounding more than balance. They would probably have the overall edge among the teams if they were to play a round-robin tournament. 1994 would be second overall because Aquino was still an amateur, Teng was undesized, and Polistico was not that outstanding a rebounder for his size.

Shooting. I would tend to pick the current RP team, which places an emphasis on hitting the three-ball to beat taller teams. You have the league’s best shooters in Ritualo, Hontiveros and dela Cruz, and everyone else can hit the outside shot, save perhaps for Taulava (who shouldn’t be shooting from outside, anyway). In second place, I’d put the 1990 team, which had Caidic, Magsanoc, Loyzaga and Samboy Lim, all consistent outside bombers. The other teams have had outstanding talent, but they were all just starting out or past their peak.

Ballhandling. This might be a tie between the first and last units on our list. Hector Calma was the best pure point guard the league has ever seen, while Ronnie Magsanoc was a great passer and shooter back in 1990. Today, between Jimmy Alapag and Jayjay Helterbrand, you have two different looks, and the ability to take it strong to the basket, too. Come to think of it, today’s team might have a slight edge, but we have yet to see them in actual competition.

Offense. Overall, today’s team has it all: long-distance scorers, penetrators, a good running game, and individual offensive talent. But those of us who’ve been around long enough realize that any team that had Samboy Lim (Asian Games Mythical Team), Mon Fernandez, Alvin Patrimonio and Allan Caidic would be hard to beat, especially inside the paint.

Defense. Individually, the 1990 team was built to stop the opposition, regardless of their size. Imagine having only two weeks’ notice, and finishing second to a Chinese team with seven-footers that had been together far longer. Chito Loyzaga, Benjie Paras, Mon Fernandez and Rey Cuenco could stop almost anyone in their prime. Today’s team would probably be second, thanks to their athleticism, tied with the 1994 squad (Codiñera, Teng, Agustin, Evangelista).

Ultimately, it would probably come down to the textbook match-up between the smaller, more cohesive stars of yesterday in the 1990 Philippine team, versus the best players of today, 2007. Each team has the talent, teamwork and balance to get past the three others on our list. And that’s a game I’d pay to see.

full battle gear
04-17-2007, 11:44 AM
Chot Reyes profuse with praise for nationals

By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 05:03am (Mla time) 04/17/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- The crack selection of millionaire PBA superstars making up the RP Team returned from a two-week camp in the United States Sunday night, with coach Chot Reyes happy of having met his objectives.

And with three months to go before the FIBA-Asia in Tokoshima, Japan, the mercurial mentor believes that the Philippine Five is progressing right on schedule.

“On a scale of 1-10, I’d say we’re at about a 6 in terms of being competition-ready for the FIBA-Asia is concerned,” Reyes told the Philippine Daily Inquirer over the phone Monday.

“I still think we have a long way to go, considering that we started practice only March 12,” he added. “But this is an important first step.”

The champion drillmaster could not hide his appreciation of how the team worked truly hard during camp. He said the team achieved what it travelled for -- skills training, conditioning and the chance to play against top-caliber teams.

“They were great,” said Reyes. “Everyone really showed up to work -- their work ethic and attitude were exemplary. And make no mistake about it, the camp had a killer schedule.”

The team members -- Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag, Ren-Ren Ritualo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Mick Pennisi, Tony dela Cruz, Dondon Hontiveros, Jay-Jay Helterbrand, Danny Seigle, Kerby Raymundo and Mark Caguioa -- will all join PBA All-Star activities in the cities of San Fernando and Baguio next week before going back to work.

Incidentally, Reyes on Monday clarified that the task of returning to the Olympics would depend on a strong showing in Japan -- no less than second place if China emerges as champion.

The FIBA-Asia is the qualifier for the Beijing 2008 Olympics and the Asian country that goes there other than China should either win the Japan tournament or wind up second to the Chinese.

China, being the host, already has an automatic slot, and the only remaining spot will be decided in Tokoshima.

So even if China, by some design, finishes out of the money, only the champion will go to the Games.

full battle gear
04-17-2007, 11:52 AM
US-based cager being eyed for RP five

By WAYLON GALVEZ
www.mb.com.ph


ASIDE FROM meeting its objectives in a two-week training camp in the US, coach Chot Reyes may have found his 12th man for the national team.

Reyes, who arrived Sunday night with members of the RP five, said yesterday that he will meet with his coaching staff to assess the performance of Fil-American guard Gabe Norwood.

The 6-foot-5 Norwood, who played point guard for George Mason University, a US NCAA Division 1 school which entered the Final Four two years ago, suited up for several games for the nationals.

"Yes he (Norwood) could be the 12th man but that’s got to be decided by the coaching staff," Reyes told the Bulletin.

"We’ve been keeping in touch with him since last year. We already know that he’s a Filipino-American. We met his family in Los Angeles, and there’s no doubt, dugong Pinoy."

Reyes said that the 22-year-old Norwoods’ grandparents hail from Pangasinan and Tarlac.

"The player we need (from the PBA) won’t be released by his mother team, that’s why we have to find elsewhere. Gabe is an excellent player, and he proved he can fit with other players," added Reyes.

Reyes reportedly tried to get the services of Kelly Williams of Sta. Lucia Realty, the season’s top overall rookie pick to replace Rudy Hatfield.

However, the Realtors top officials won’t release the Fil-Am forward from Detroit, Michigan as it could affect their campaign in the PBA Fiesta Cup.

From the three alternates – Romel Adducul, Rafi Reavis and Rico Villanueva – Reyes was supposed to insert Reavis to take Hatfield’s place but a left shoulder injury ended that possibility.

Other members of the team that went to the US were Mark Caguioa, Dondon Hontiveros, Tony dela Cruz, Danny Seigle, Mick Pennisi, Jayjay Helterbrand, Kerby Raymundo, Renren Ritualo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Jimmy Alapag and Asi Taulava.

The nationals capped their training with an impressive 93-89 win opposite the Long Beach State 49ers, a US NCAA Division 1 school, at the Home Depot Center in Carson City, California.

Except for Caguioa and Helterbrand, who will both arrive on Wednesday, the rest of the RP team mainstays are already here.

The daily practice of the team will resume Thursday at the Moro Lorenzo Gym in Ateneo, Katipunan.

Reyes and his team are preparing for two crucial international meets, the Southeast Asian Basketball Association Championship (SEABA) in Thailand and the FIBA-Asia Championship in Japan, the qualifying meet for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

Aside from the competition, the national team also attended the Joe Abunassar training camp also in Carson City near Los Angeles.

"It’s very successful, we met our objectives. First we got superior conditioning, then we got quality competition, which we can’t have here, and lastly the team really bonded very well," said Reyes.

gameface_one
05-03-2007, 10:14 AM
Villanueva takes place of Hatfield in RP cage team


By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 02:38am (Mla time) 05/03/2007


MANILA, Philippines -- After laboring long and hard in practice without any guarantees, Enrico Villanueva Wednesday was rewarded with the 12th and final slot in the Philippine team that will see action in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) Champions Cup from May 12-20 in Iran.

The bull-strong 6-foot-6 Red Bull center completes the crack squad that will take another step toward returning to the Olympics, which is set next year in Beijing, China.

“I have mixed feelings because I would still want to help my team (Red Bull in the PBA Fiesta Cup),” Villanueva told the Philippine Daily Inquirer over the phone. “But at the same time, it’s an honor to be playing for my country.”

The Tehran joust will be the team’s final tune-up for the Seaba championship in Thailand three days later on May 24 to 28.

From Iran, the team planes back for a one-day rest before departing the next day for Ratchaburi, Thailand, where it seeks at least a top two finish that would qualify the Philippines for the FIBA-Asia championship set in Tokushima, Japan, in late July.

No less than a runner-up finish behind China in the Tokushima tournament is required for the Philippines to make it back to the Summer Games.

Villanueva, originally named last March as one of three alternates, has been one of the hardest workers in practice and has shown the best potential in replacing Rudy Hatfield in the roster.

Hatfield had to beg off his slot because of his scheduled marriage that was finalized before the RP team composition was announced.

It will be the first international stint with the big boys for Villanueva, who has donned the national colors just once as an amateur in the 18-under ABC championship in India where the RP squad fared badly.

The former Ateneo de Manila University ace will be out of Red Bull for at least three games in the Fiesta Cup.

gameface_one
05-04-2007, 11:32 AM
RP team’s 12th berth still open


By NELSON BELTRAN

The Philippine Star

Beyond the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup, the 12th spot in the national team tasked to earn a spot in the Beijing Games remains open.

RP team coach Chot Reyes told The STAR that Enrico Villanueva was given permission by his mother ball club Red Bull to join the Nationals only in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup slated May 12-20 in Tehran, Iran.

With such restriction on Villanueva, Reyes said the 12th spot for the RP team campaigning in the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in Tokushima, Japan on July remains up for grabs.

Also being considered for the spot are San Miguel’s Rommel Adducul and Fil-Am player Gabe Norwood who’s graduating from George Mason University in June.

After the Champions Cup, the Nationals are flying to Ratchaburi, Thailand for the SEABA men’s championship while Villanueva rejoins the Bulls in the PBA Fiesta Cup.

"My position is to play only 11 players in SEABA. I’m not losing sleep over missing a 12th player because SEABA is just a four-day tournament," said Reyes.

"But I’m not closing the door for a 12th man. I might get an amateur player. But I need a guy who can join us in training," Reyes added.

The SEABA men’s championship is the qualifier among Southeast Asian countries for the FIBA-Asia championship in Tokushima in July. Team Philippines is expected to stamp its class against lowly rivals, including Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

But that’s not the case in the Champions Cup where teams from Lebanon, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, India, Kazakhstan, Syria, Kuwait and host Iran have confirmed participation. Teams in the Champions Cup can field two imports each but Team Philippines is opting to play without one.

pachador
05-04-2007, 12:44 PM
revolutionary software video game for training basketball players developed by Israelis:

http://www.intelligym.com/


paki-forward kay Chot Reyes kung hindi pa niya ito alam

gameface_one
05-06-2007, 11:29 AM
Villanueva’s SEABA stint dim
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 05/06/2007

Enrico Villanueva may have kissed goodbye his hopes of joining the RP team in the SEABA championship in Thailand as Red Bull has dropped in the standings and teammate Junthy Valenzuela is likely to draw stiff sanction for punching Talk n Text’s Macmac Cardona in their game Friday at the Araneta Coliseum.

Before the contest, Villanueva was hoping his team would fare well in their next three games so he could seek clearance from coach Yeng Guiao and the Red Bull management to suit up with the Nationals in the SEABA joust set May 24-28.

The 6-foot-5 behemoth was earlier given permission to join the national team in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup slated May 12-20 in Tehran, Iran.

Valenzuela has been summoned to appear at the PBA office tomorrow in the aftermath of his fight with Cardona in a game won by the Phone Pals, 127-100.

PBA commissioner Noli Eala didn’t want to preempt his decision but said Valenzuela committed "an offense that will not be taken lightly."

"It’s not so much about the gravity of action but his belligerence. Ayaw magpapigil. But in fairness to him, we’ll give him the opportunity to explain his side," Eala said.

Valenzuela, a rugged Cebuano player who has committed various offenses before, is likely to be slapped suspension and fine.

His suspension may affect Villanueva’s participation in the SEABA championship which serves as the regional qualifier for the FIBA-Asian championship in Tokushima, Japan in July.

As it is, Red Bull is already shorthanded, with Mick Pennisi loaned to the RP team ahead of Villanueva.

National coach Chot Reyes expressed concern on the imminent sanction on Valenzuela.

Red Bull is far from safe for an outright entry into the semifinals or quarterfinals with an 8-4 win-loss card.

Meanwhile, Barangay Ginebra drew closer to a guaranteed slot in the Magic Five as it rolled to a fifth straight win in the Talk n Text PBA Fiesta Cup eliminations by blasting Air21, 136-115, at the Holy Angel University gymnasium in Angeles City last night.

The Kings sustained their searing streak that had seen them earlier wallop the Welcoat Dragons by 32 points, the Coca-Cola Tigers by 12, the Purefoods Giants by 10, the Red Bull Barakos by 16 and the Sta. Lucia Realtors by 11.

The Express proved no better and they saw the end of their own streak in three games.

Air21 failed to catch up with Ginebra in the lead and instead slid to joint second place with idle Red Bull at 8-4.

The two teams try to break the standoff as the Express go up against the Coca-Cola Tigers while the Barakos take on the Sta. Lucia Realtors Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Express saw their bid turn to bits as early as the third period. as the Kings zoomed away at 102-78 with Rod Nealy firing a triple then Sunday Salvacion and Andy Seigle slamming a basket each to close their searing attack in the quarter.

Salvacion also had a big hand in a second-quarter run that gave them a 66-52 margin at the half.

Both teams came out strong, figuring in a fierce exchange of baskets at the start before the Kings seized a 30-24 lead after the opening quarter.

gameface_one
05-08-2007, 08:08 AM
All-import five tests SMC-RP team
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 05/08/2007

The SMC-Philippine team, which will soon embark on an Olympic berth quest, steps up its buildup as it plays the all-PBA import squad in an exhibition tiff at the Araneta Coliseum tonight.

Coach Chot Reyes and the Nationals consider the 7 p.m. encounter with the PBA imports as a good opportunity to test their mettle as they prime themselves up for the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, Iran.

"We’re looking forward to playing the imports because our last competition game was back on April 12," said Reyes.

"While we realize they may not have the benefit of playing together, there’s no question that they will give us problems due to their size, talent and athleticism," added Reyes, seeing a formidable rival in the all-imports team carrying the banner of Welcoat.

Coach Leo Austria promised to give the Nationals the challenge they badly need.

"We’ll take the game seriously because we intend to help the national team in its cause," said Austria.

Austria will have at his disposal playing-assistant coach Alex Compton, Rod Nealy of Ginebra, Galen Young of San Miguel Beer, J.J. Sullinger of Talk n Text, Rosell Ellis of Alaska, Marquin Chandler of Purefoods, Shawn Daniels of Air21, James Penny of Red Bull, Jamaal Williams of Sta. Lucia Realty, James Varem of Coca-Cola, and Wayland White of Welcoat.

The game will be officiated by two PBA referees and one from BARECOM, and will make use of rules used in international play, including four 10-minute quarters.

On the heels of their successful two-week stint in the United States, taking on top collegiate teams and selections from the National Basketball Development League, the Nationals are competing in the Asian Club Championship slated May 12-20 then in the SEABA men’s championship from May 24-28.

Teams are allowed to field in two imports each in the Champions Cup but the Philippines is opting not to play one so as to step up its training for the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in Tokushima, Japan in July.

"Tomorrow’s game is significant as this will be the first public appearance of the national team since it was formally organized in March," said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

"I’m sure the game will be exciting and fun as well as a good indicator of how far our team has already prepared. I hope everyone will come and watch the game and support our national team’s campaign to win basketball glory for the country," Eala added.

gameface_one
05-08-2007, 08:17 AM
Nationals battle PBA imports



By WAYLON GALVEZ
mb.com.ph

THE PHILIPPINE Team, aching to secure an Olympic berth for next year’s Beijing Games, hopes to show what it can do today when it battles the pro league’s current imports carrying the banner of Welcoat Paints in an exhibition game at the Araneta Coliseum.



The all-pro Nationals and the imports clash at 7 p.m. in a game serving as a tune-up match for the Chot Reyes-mentored squad which leaves on Thursday to compete in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup starting May 12 to 20 in Tehran, Iran.

While the imports won’t take the game seriously, the Nationals are expected to give their all if only to gain something positive as they prepare for tough battles ahead.

"It will help (the RP team) in providing us with quality game competition," said Reyes yesterday.

Reyes and his all-pro team are hoping to earn an Olympic berth for the first time in 36 years, or since a team led by the legendary Robert Jaworski played in the 1972 Munich Games.

Leading the team are Mark Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand, Danny Seigle and Dondon Hontiveros – all capable of scoring inside and outside.

Other members are Renren Ritualo, Jimmy Alapag, Asi Taulava, Ranidel de Ocampo, Tony dela Cruz, Kerby Raymundo, Mick Pennisi and Rico Villanueva Villanueva, who got the spot vacated by Rudy Hatfield.

The hardworking Hatfield gave up slot his due to a conflict of schedule with his August wedding to fiancée Brittany Hers.

The nationals started training last March, and recently finished a two-week training camp in Carson City near Los Angeles in California, USA. Also in L.A., they played against several teams like a selection of ABA and the NBA D-League players, as well as US National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) schools.

The team’s impressive win was a come-from-behind 93-89 victory over the Long Beach State 46ers, a Division 1 NCAA school.

"That was our last game, so we really need this game (versus imports) before we fly to Iran," said Reyes.

The country’s participation in the FIBA Champions Cup was made possible after RP-Harbour Centre bagged the SEABA Champions Cup last month in Indonesia.

After the Iran tournament, the team will complete in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) Men’s Championship on May 24 to 28 in Ratchaburi, Thailand.

The SEABA meet serves as elimination phase for the Olympic qualifying FIBA Asia Championship in Tokushima, Japan in late July.

National team players were actually pulled out from their mother clubs in the season-ending conference to concentrate in training, but several players participated recently in the PBA All-Star Weekend.

"We don’t have the luxury (of time) to practice for this game. But definitely, we’ll give them (RP Team) a good fight. We’ll go for the win," said Welcoat coach Leo Austria, who will call the shots for the imports.

"Though this is just an exhibition game, we’ll take it seriously because this is the only way we can help them in their preparation for various tournaments," he added.

The Nationals will face Ginebra’s Rod Nealy, Red Bull’s James Penny, Air21’s Shawn Daniels, Alaska’s Rosell Ellis, Talk ‘N Text’s J.J. Sullinger, Coca-Cola’s Jeff Varen, San Miguel’s Galen Young, Purefoods’s Marquin Chandler, Sta. Lucia’s Jamaal Williams and Welcoat’s Wayland White.

gameface_one
05-09-2007, 07:53 AM
Win over PBA imports boosts RP five morale
By Nelson Beltran
The Philippine Star 05/09/2007

A feel-good win over the PBA imports hopefully could serve as a big boost for SMC-Philippine team as the Nationals leave the country Friday morning for Tehran, Iran to vie for the FIBA-Asia Champions’ Cup.

The Nationals showed quickness and superb outside shooting to beat the PBA imports, 103-100, in an exhibition match last night at the Araneta Coliseum.

Danny Seigle, Mark Caguioa and Dondon Hontiveros produced big outputs from the outside before Jimmy Alapag and Mick Pennisi came through with crucial plays in the closing seconds to give the Nationals an inspiring send-off party for Iran.

"It will surely help build our confidence to know we can compete with anybody. To me that’s the victory we gained in this contest," said RP team coach Chot Reyes.

"I appealed to the imports to make it like our first game in the Asian Champions Cup and ‘‚m thankful they responded. They gave us a tough battle," Reyes added.

The imports blew three chances to force a tie in the end on missed three-pointers by Marquin Chandler, Rossel Ellis and Galen Young in the last 12 seconds.

To Reyes, the all-import team resembled the Qatar team which will be among their tough rivals in the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifying tourney in July in Tokushima, Japan.

Reyes said it‚s a learning experience which exposed things that the team should still work on

"We lack the competitive sharpness since we‚re lacking competitive games. We still have to work on our defense," said Reyes.

But overall, the national mentor was pleased with how they performed against the PBA imports.

"The most satisfying part is seeing the boys enjoy playing together. They cheered for one another. There were big names on the bench cheering their teammates on the court," said Reyes.

Meanwhle, Air21 and Red Bull take on separate opponents today looking for a win that will keep them close with the pacesetting Barangay Ginebra side nearing the homestretch of the Talk n Text PBA Fiesta Cup double-round-robin eliminations.

The Express and the Bulls are expected to come back strong in their games against the Coca-Cola Tigers and the Sta. Lucia Realtors, respectively, at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Express and the Tigers clash at 4:35 p.m. then the Bulls and the Realtors collide at 7:20 p.m.

Meanwhile, defending champion Welcoat-Makati aims for a second straight win when it battles Talk n Text-Quezon City 2 in the Burlington-PBA Basketball League.

The Batang Welcoat Dragons, 71-32 winner over the Batang San Miguel Beermen-Caloocan Sunday, face the Batang TnT at 1 p.m. following the 11 a.m. encounter between debuting Coca-Cola-HRCSD and Red Bull-San Juan.

Air21 and Red Bull slid to joint second place with Alaska Milk as the Express were walloped by the Kings, 115-136, Saturday while the Bulls lost their lost two games to the Talk n Text Phone Pals and the Purefoods Giants by an average margin of 20.5 points.

The Bulls have a job cut out for them against the Realtors with Junthy Valenzuela serving the first of his two-game suspension and import James Penny battling a back injury.

Penny sat out the RP team-PBA imports exhibition duel last night at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Tigers and the Realtors are more in need of a victory with the two teams in the lower half of the chart.

Coca-Cola is tied with San Miguel Beer at sixth place on their identical 5-7 win-loss cards while Sta. Lucia holds a 3-8 slate, just a game and a half ahead of cellar-dweller Welcoat (2-10). The last placer after the double-round elims will be the only team to miss the playoffs.

gameface_one
05-09-2007, 08:03 AM
RP-San Miguel makes first public appearance

Team to face PBA All-Import squad


Cebu Daily News
Last updated 12:33pm (Mla time) 05/08/2007


Game today, May 08, 2007:
(Araneta Coliseum)
7 p.m. – RP-San Miguel vs. PBA All-Imports

Before plunging into international competitions, the RP-San Miguel squad will be tested on Tuesday when it plays the PBA All-Import squad at 7 p.m. at the Araneta Coliseum.

Tuesday night’s game marks the RP Team's first public appearance since it was formally organized in March.

Coached by veteran mentor Chot Reyes, the RP Team is composed of Jayjay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa, Asi Taulava, Jimmy Alapag, Renren Ritualo, Ranidel de Ocampo, Mick Pennisi, Rico Villanueva, Danny Seigle, Dondon Hontiveros, Kerby Raymundo, and Tony dela Cruz.

The Nationals are set leave for Tehran, Iran on May 11 to compete in the Asian Club Championship slated May 12 to 20.

The Philippines earned the right to represent the region in Tehran after an all-Philippine Basketball League selection coached by Harbour Centre team consultant Junel Baculi ruled the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) Club Championship in Jakarta, Indonesia recently.

After their Tehran trip, the Nationals will also compete in the Seaba Men's Championship on May 24 to 28 in Ratchaburi, Thailand.

That competition serves as a qualifying tournament for the FIBA-Asia Men's Championship (formerly ABC Championships), which will be held in Tokushima, Japan on July 28 to August 5.

Top finishers in the FIBA-Asia Men's Championship will get the chance to play in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Comprising the PBA All-Import squad, which will be coached by Welcoat Paints' Leo Austria and assistants Alex Compton and Caloy Garcia, are Rod Nealy of Ginebra, Galen Young of San Miguel Beer, J.J. Sullinger of Talk 'N Text, Rosell Ellis of Alaska, Marquin Chandler of Purefoods, Shawn Daniels of Air21, James Penny of Red Bull, Jamaal Williams of Sta. Lucia Realty, James Varem of Coca-Cola and Wayland White of Welcoat.

gameface_one
05-13-2007, 12:51 PM
Tough road ahead for RP5
mb.com.ph





TEHRAN, Iran. — The participants may be fewer than expected, but the competition level remains basically the same. This was the assessment made by San Miguel-RP Team coach Chot Reyes after a quick scan of the opposition in the 18th FIBA-Asia Champions Cup that starts Saturday at the Azadi Sports Complex here.


"It’s still a tough field," noted Reyes during Friday evening’s reception party of the tournament that was reduced to just eight entries instead of the expected full compliment of 10.

For still unexplained reasons, Kuwait and Jordan failed to arrive, forcing a slight alteration in the tournament format, but basically making it a more compact and still hazard-laden event.

Perennial contender Lebanon, represented here by Blue Stars, is here along with former titlist Al Rayyan of Qatar.

Although the Astana Tigers of Kazakhstan have no import like the Philippines and India, Reyes believes it is foremost among the teams to watch out for.

"National team nila iyan and their coaches are their former stars," said Reyes who has coached against the towering Kazakhs in the 2005 and ‘06 Jones Cup.

Even Saba Battery Club of host Iran, which the Philippines takes on first Sunday, could be a darkhorse and mostly because of its imports, Nndabuem Muoneke and Joseph Fitzgerald Garth.

Muoneke is a former Purefoods import in the PBA but it is Garth, a beefy 6-foot10 who impresses Reyes more.

"Pati mukha me muscle," said Reyes.

Among the more prominent faces here is Julious Nwosu, one of Al Jalaa of Syria’s imports.

The 6’9 Nwosu was an integral part of the Team Harbour Centre-Philippines team that topped the tournament’s Southeast Asian qualifier in Jakarta, Indonesia last month, making possible the Nationals’ stint here.

But the Iranians and Syrians are only part of the tale.

The withdrawals forced organizers to make only slight alterations to the tournament format that brackets Lebanon, Qatar and India in Group A and Syria, Iran, Kazakhstan, Bahrain and the Philippines in Group B.

The teams in each group play a single round robin, but those in Group A are already seeded in the quarterfinals.

Group B is drastically different with the top team advancing outright to the semifinals on Saturday and the next three to Friday’s one-day quarterfinals.

Opening day games pit Iran against Bahrain, Lebanon versus Qatar and Kazakhstan versus India.

Prior to properly scouting the opposition, more especially the Philippines’ groupmates, Reyes, his staff and the Nationals spent Friday mostly recovering from the tiring trip from Manila that started just past midnight with an eight-hour trip to Dubai.

Next came a three-hour stop at the United Arab Emirates capital, a twohour hop to this Islamic republic and an hourlong bus ride to this sprawling capital bordered on three sides by the majestic, partly snow-capped Albors Mountain range.

pachador
05-14-2007, 06:58 AM
Iran’s Saba powers past Philippine San Miguel

TEHRAN, May 13 (MNA) – Iran’s Saba Battery handed the Philippines’ San Miguel a 101-88 defeat at the Asian basketball tournament in the court of Azadi Sports Complex in western Tehran Sunday.

The Group B-bound side thrashed Syrian team Al Muharraq 78-48 in their opening match Saturday.

Saba takes on Al-Jala from Syria Monday.

pachador
05-14-2007, 12:49 PM
according to other posters in pex and interbasket, the top scorers were hontiveros with 21 and caguioa with 19 while Seigle had 6 only. another poster also said that the Philippines gave up in the last quarter(gave up as in wala nang gana ? or was it protest dahil sa officiating? or dahil nga tune-up lang naman ito hindi na sila nag-pressure defense) . in fact the score of Iran was 101 whichcan be an indication of no-pressure defense by Philippines(sinadya siguro para mag-relax ang mga arabo or talagang hindi lang mabantayan mga imports nila) . Its high scoring masyado for an international tournament.

based on this, its possible that chot tried an offense that focused on perimeter shots. We dont know if Seigle was 6 points due to bangko siya?, or the defender shut him down or he only had limited minutes.

Lastly, this loss is one more good reason why the national team joined this tournament. its better to play tough teams and learn from it than to keep winning over weak teams and only stoke our egos then get blasted later by the tough teams in Fiba-Asia.

whatever the excuses and reasons, thank you SABA battery for giving our national team a hard time. Good learning experience !

abcdef
05-14-2007, 08:16 PM
Pachador are you sure? The game was scheduled at 4:15 Iran time meaning 8:45 dito sa Manila.

You are so into PEX! Better stay there and not post here if your main source is PEX.

gameface_one
05-14-2007, 09:39 PM
^^^^Actually, pachador is right. See the stats posted in the Asia Champions Cup Thread.

pachador
05-14-2007, 11:51 PM
Sumakit ang kamay at balikat ni Pennissi at Taulava sa kakabantay ng 7'3" na higanteng kingkong ng Iran...kong is king !!! ...nanay ko .... ;D

see pic below:
http://www.fibaasia.net/Website%20files/18thFACCup/pic1.jpg

http://www.fibaasia.net/Website%20files/18thFACCup/pic1.jpg


Saba Battery (IRI) 101 - Harpour Center (PHI) 88 (Q's: 32-25, 51-38, 78-64 & 101-88)
- Saba Battery's scorers: Garth Joseph (217-C-73, college: St.Rose (NY)) (39 pts, 12 reb, 3 bs, 2 ast, 2 stl), Samad Nikkhah (17 pts, 4 stl), Babak Nezafat (16 pts, 11 reb, 4 ast, 3 stl), Aidin Bahrami (9 pts, 2 ast, 2 stl), Gabe Muoneke (9 pts), Hamed Afagh (8 pts, 3 ast), Behzad Afradi (2 pts), Saman Veisi (1 pts, 3 ast).
- Harpour Center's scorers: Donaldo Hontiveros (23 pts, 7 reb, 3 ast, 2 stl), Mark Caguioa (19 pts), Michael Pennisi (13 pts), Ranidel De Ocampo (7 pts, 2 stl), Daniel Seigle (6 pts, 2 stl, 2 bs), Kerby Rymundo (6 pts), Pauliasi Taulava (5 pts, 6 reb), Felorendo Jr. (3 pts), Jim Alapag (2 pts), Enrico Vililanueva (2 pts), Anthoni Dela Cruz (2 pts).

Asia-basket

AnthonyServinio
05-15-2007, 01:35 PM
Sumakit ang kamay at balikat ni Pennissi at Taulava sa kakabantay ng 7'3" na higanteng kingkong ng Iran...kong is king !!! ...nanay ko .... ;D

see pic below:
http://www.fibaasia.net/Website%20files/18thFACCup/pic1.jpg

* * *The player on the left is Anthony dela Cruz, not Michael Pennisi.

gameface_one
05-18-2007, 10:01 AM
Olympic dream alive – Eala

By JOAQUIN HENSON
The Philippine Star

PBA commissioner Noli Eala said Thursday despite the San Miguel Beer-Philippine team’s 1-3 start in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, the dream of qualifying for the Beijing Olympics next year is intact but admitted it will take a lot more work to get the job done.

Eala leaves this Friday morning to join the national squad in Tehran. He will be accompanied by San Miguel Corp. assistant vice president Robert Non and SBP executive director nominee Patrick Gregorio.

The team beat Al Muharraq of Bahrain, 99-80, last Wednesday to advance to the quarterfinals against unbeaten Blue Stars of Lebanon in a knockout game Friday night. The winner moves to the semifinals and the loser drops to the consolation pool. Win or lose against Lebanon, two more games are scheduled for the Philippines this weekend before the team returns home.

Eala said coach Chot Reyes is considering to sit out the consolations on Saturday and Sunday if the team loses to Lebanon but no decision has been made.

“Before leaving, Chot already thought about skipping the consolations because there will be little we can gain from playing India,” said Eala. “Besides, he’ll probably want to rest his players. But I hope to convince him to play on. We never expected to do well in the tournament which allows teams to play two imports each.”

Eala said Reyes never entertained the notion of reinforcing the national team with imports.

“Chot knew there would be expectations from fans to win after Harbour Centre took the SEABA Champions Cup title but didn’t want to bring imports because it would upset our preparations,” said Eala. “The whole idea is to get our guys playing together as a team, looking ahead to the SEABA and FIBA-Asia Championships. When we hosted the Champions Cup two years ago, we saw how different the game is played with dominating imports. So we had no illusions of rocking the boat in Tehran.”

Eala said the experience of playing stiff opposition in Tehran will pay off at the SEABA Championships in Ratchaburi on May 24-28.

“I’m hoping the defeats in Tehran will make the guys hungrier to win in Thailand,” said Eala. “I don’t think our showing in the Champions Cup is a gauge of how we’ll do in SEABA and the FIBA-Asia Championships because the opposition is completely different. But it’s a gauge of our progress in adjusting to the international game. Slowly, we’re getting used to playing successive games in a grueling schedule where there is little time to regroup with no long breaks.”

The downside is the losses to Saba Battery of Iran, Astana Tigers of Kazakhstan and Al Jalaa Aleppo of Syria could dampen the national team’s competitive spirit.

“When you start losing one after another, it might become a habit and you lose the sense of urgency,” said Eala. “That’s what I fear. In 1998, our national team played a series of games against NCAA Division I teams in the US and got clobbered consistently. But that team rebounded to take the bronze medal at the Asian Games.”

Eala said the Tehran tournament was an eye-opener in that it showed the Philippines will not only be threatened by Korea, Japan and Chinese-Taipei at the FIBA-Asia Championships in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5 but also by the emerging West Asia powers like Qatar, Lebanon, Iran and Syria.

“The strong teams in Tehran, however, will have to adjust their styles in Tokushima because it’s different playing without two dominating imports,” said Eala. “It’ll be a different kind of game we’ll see from the Middle East teams. In Tehran, it’s a club tournament. In Tokushima, national teams will be playing without imports.”

gameface_one
05-18-2007, 10:07 AM
‘A reality check’ — Eala



By Tito Talao
mb.com.ph

PBA COMMISSIONER Noli Eala calls the three successive setbacks of the SMC-Philippine team in the import-loaded 18th FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran "a reality check."


National coach Chot Reyes, half a globe away, would hardly disagree.

"No excuses. There’s obviously much to be done. We’re still a long way off," Eala said.

The prognosis was bared after SMC-RP, wracked by injury, absorbed a 34-point shellacking from Syria, following double-digit losses to host Iran and Kazakhstan.

"It’s a bitter pill to swallow," Eala said Wednesday night, dropping by the PBA press room at the Araneta Coliseum.

The unpalatable taste notwithstanding, it’s a prescription the nationals must hold their noses to, close their eyes, and drink.

"We went to Tehran knowing for a fact that it’s a club championship that will utilize two imports of unlimited height while we have none," said Eala.

"Nonetheless, we went there to play competitive basketball and to improve. That we lost is tough, but it’s a learning experience we must accept."

Eala makes it clear the PBA remains "steadfast" in its support of the basketball program drawn by Reyes for the all-pro squad aiming to return to the Olympic Games next year in Beijing.

"We are very confident the team will move on and perform better as the tournament schedule progresses," he said.

"We are, after all, preparing for a different objective — the SEABA Men’s Championship (May 24-28 in Ratchaburi, Thailand) and the FIBA Asia Championship (July 28-Aug. 5 in Tokushima, Japan). That’s why I’m appealing for more patience for our SMC-RP team."

gameface_one
05-19-2007, 10:53 AM
RP team struggles with FIBA rules
mb.com.ph





TEHRAN — Slowly and painfully, the San Miguel RP team is getting a dose of the international brand of play, far from where it is used to back home.



With three losses in four matches, the Filipinos resume their campaign in the 18th FIBA Asia Champions Cup against unbeaten Blue Star of Lebanon Friday at the Azadi Stadium here.

The Filipino brand of basketball is a replica of how the game is played in the United States.

"In the US, it’s speed and quickness. In the international arena, it’s more on size and physicality," observed RP coach Chot Reyes.

Several key players have suffered an assortment of mild injuries since the tournament began.

Tony dela Cruz won’t see action against Lebanon after a severely sprained left ankle he sustained during their 99-80 win over Bahrain’s AlMuharraq last Wednesday.

"The physicality is the biggest adjustment to make. We’ve got to have the ability to handle hard contacts, unlike in the PBA where there’re no hand checks and a bump is a foul," Reyes explained. "In international play, you’ve got to defend against bone-jarring screens, get used to being constantly hit and be prepared for a veritable no-blood, no-foul rule."

This kind of experience the Filipinos won’t get back home, according to Reyes.

"It’s not the same kasi as kami-kami lang in practice. Nobody will give bone-jarring picks and hits, no matter how hard the practices are," he explained. Reyes said the Filipinos will certainly be the underdogs against the Lebanese side.

"To me, they’re the second-best, if not the best, team here," said Reyes. "We go into the game as underdogs, but you never know."

The Nationals won’t have to worry about the size advantage of the Lebanese.

But 6-10 John Carter and 6’6 William Pippen have proven to be efficient and effective, especially when combining forces with Lebanon star national player El Fadi El Khatib.

Their coach, Maz Trakh, is a former Talk N Text consultant and thus attune to the style of play in the PBA.

That’s why Reyes the gameplan he hatched late Wednesday was drilled repeatedly during the Nationals’ Friday morning practice.

"We’ve got to control the ball longer, but our emphasis will be on defense," Reyes said. "We’ve got to stop their transition game and disrupt their half-court offense. Grabe kasi ang half-court executions nila."

A win over Lebanon will push the Nationals into Saturday’s semifinals while a loss will relegate them to the battle for fifth place.

Any finish will suit Reyes, just as long as his players continue benefiting from the stint that precedes next week’s SEABA tilt and July’s FIBA Asia championship.

"That’s why we’re here, to learn," he stressed.

gameface_one
05-19-2007, 11:06 AM
In defense of RP 5
THE GAME OF MY LIFE By Bill Velasco
Philippine Star


Saturday, May 19, 2007


Okay, so the SMC-Philippine basketball team isn’t doing spectacularly as expected in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup. As of now, people are gradually losing faith in the team, which had to win one of four games to make it into the quarterfinals.

Frankly, this writer expected the team to scrape by, for the simple reason that the other teams are playing with two imports, while our team isn’t. Any time you have NBA or European size and talent, expect to lose by at least 20. But many people are totally missing the point by looking at the win-loss column. The tournament serves as part of the team’s matriculation, as preparation for the bigger jousts ahead. Winning this tournament will not do us any good, because it is simply a club competition, where selections or commercial champion club teams get to pick the biggest imports they can to shore up their frontcourts.

“People are going to start criticizing the coaching staff for a lot of what they’ve done, and that isn’t fair,” PBA coliseum announcer and sports talk show host Boyet Sison believes. “They don’t see that the real goal is to make it into the Olympics. Anything else they do before that will be educational, somehow.”

There is a silver lining to this seeming dark cloud. The Philippines is playing intact, as a unit, and will definitely be the better for it.

“When you get to the actual FIBA-Asia tournament, which really matters, then you’ll see the difference,” adds Kirk Collier, skills coach of San Miguel Beer and Ginebra San Miguel. “Our team didn’t use imports, so we’re not dependent on them. Our chemistry is going to be so much better when it really matters.”

Even the fact that the players are getting injured is a sign that they are adjusting. Head coach Chot Reyes opted not to use their rest day and reportedly scheduled a scrimmage with the Iranian team, which we will likely face in the FIBA-Asia tournament.

“Let’s face it, pro players get soft sometimes,” says Jinno Rufino, host of Sports TV. “Now, they are really being pushed by Chot and the coaching staff. When they get to an actual tournament, they will be playing every day – like they’re doing now. In the PBA, they only play about once a week. Besides, there is a lot at stake, so now, the players are being asked to sacrifice.”

The team lost ground last year, in the wake of the FIBA suspension. The daily practices were reduced to weekly sessions, and the players could have been sharper and more familiar with each other had they been more certain of their future.

“We should be getting ready for the FIBA-Asia by now,” Reyes told this writer two months ago. “Instead, we find ourselves just starting to re-learn the system, and make up for the year and half that we lost.”

The target is to place in the top two in the SEABA championship next week, then medal in the FIBA-Asia tournament in July, to secure a berth in the Beijing Olympics next year.

So, to be fair to the men wearing the flag, the real battle has not yet begun.

* * *

Congratulations to Izod for its successful launch of its Carbon and Cool FX lines at the Podium Thursday night. Several sports and media personalities attended the event, including columnist Mon Tulfo, PBL commissioner Chino Trinidad and sports broadcaster Jude Turcuato.

The two lines showcase the latest technologies in moisture and odor control, keeping sportsmen cool and comfortable even in the heat of competition.

true.blue
05-20-2007, 12:28 AM
RP 5 cast under review
By Joaquin Henson


Sunday, May 20, 2007
Page: 1
PBA commissioner Noli Eala said the other day the San Miguel Beer-Philippine team roster will be reviewed for possible tweaking after returning from the SEABA Championships in Ratchaburi, Thailand, with a qualifying ticket to the FIBA-Asia joust in Tokushima, Japan, on July 28-Aug. 5.

Although Eala saw no difficulty claiming one of two FIBA-Asia slots from the SEABA qualifiers, he said the danger of an ambush exists and will not be discounted.

Thailand insisted on hosting the SEABA tournament as a milestone event in the year-long celebration of King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s 80th birthday on Dec. 5, rejecting a late bid from Manila.

“I’m sure Thailand is preparing to win,” said Eala. “I heard they’re recalling four or five players from the US and Europe to play for the national team. I was told one of them plays in a European commercial league.”

Likely recruits for the Thai squad include Oun Savueth of St. Claire in Canada, Saelee Kao of Mendocino Community College in California and junior varsity cager Krit Vichaiwatamapanich of Worcester Academy in Massachusetts.

Indonesia is another threat. In the recent SEABA Champions Cup in Jakarta, Indonesia upset the Philippines in the eliminations but lost in a rematch for the crown. The tournament, however, featured imports and the Philippines was represented by PBL cagers.

The top two finishers in the SEABA Championships will represent the Southeast Asian zone in Tokushima.

Eala said the Philippine team coming home from Ratchaburi is a big man away from looming as a darkhorse contender in FIBA-Asia.

“After SEABA, I think the composition of the team will be reviewed,” said Eala. “In Tehran, we saw the caliber of players the Middle East countries will use in Tokushima. My feeling is we’re still a big man short but it’s all up to coach Chot (Reyes) whose emphasis is outside shooting ability for FIBA-Asia. If ever we make it to the Olympics, I’m sure there will be another review of the lineup, possibly to bring in bigger guys.”

To prepare for Tokushima, Eala said plans are being worked out for a dual meet against China’s national farm squad next month and a four-team pocket tournament involving Japan, Korea and Angola or Senegal or Lebanon after the PBA semifinals and before the finals in July.

Eala said China will not send its A-team to Tokushima, preferring to keep Yao Ming and other first stringers for the Stankovic Cup in Beijing on July 28-Aug. 2. Besides, the FIBA-Asia meet is a qualifier for the 2008 Olympics and China, as host nation, is guaranteed a spot. The top two Tokushima finishers will represent Asia in the Olympics and if China fails to make it to the finals, there will be three Asian teams in Beijing.

“China is gearing for the Olympics and they feel they can gain more playing against European teams in the Stankovic Cup than Asian teams in Tokushima,” said Eala. “We’re negotiating for the B-team, headed by Ji Yianlian, to play our national team in a series in Manila. Then, we’ll arrange the pocket tournament. Lebanon has sent word it wants to play and they’re willing to come on their own. These games will make us ready for Tokushima.”

Eala said the Philippines should be prepared to battle a lot of tough teams in FIBA-Asia.

“As host, Japan will enjoy the homecourt advantage so they’re a threat,” said Eala. “Then there’s Korea which is bringing a brand-new team we don’t know about. The Middle East countries are tough, too. Qatar, Iran and Jordan finished 2-3-4 behind China in the last Asian Games. Then, you’ve got the former Russian states like Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. China, of course, is a given as a shoo-in. It won’t be easy but if we play our kind of game, anything can happen, regardless of the odds.”

But the first marching order is to clinch a ticket to Tokushima by entering the finals in Ratchaburi.



I wonder which other "big guy" Eala is thinking of reinforcing the team to battle the 7 footers of the competition?* We don't have that many 6'9 or bigger than Asi, and who can defend well. 6'9 Andy Siegle (always injured)? 6'9 Marlou Aquino (too soft and lazy)? The only other strong centers I can think of are Menk, Pena, Thoss, Adducul but theyre all 6'7 or shorter.

pachador
05-20-2007, 05:07 AM
Change the PBA rules ! Bring back the FIBA rules !

No respite for aching, tired bodies

Malaya newspaper May 19, 2007

TEHRAN. — San Miguel-RP continued to work with enthusiasm on what was supposed to be a rest day Thursday in the 18th FIBA Asia Champions Cup.

The respite could have been a very welcome one for the Nationals, who would have used it to rest bodies aching and tired after playing for four straight days.

Instead, national coach Chot Reyes and his wards spent the better half of the morning straining in a practice game against the Iran national pool at the Azadi Stadium.

The Iranians, featuring a 7-foot-5 who is still a work in progress and two more able centers who stand no lower than 6-foot-10, came out ahead 63-47 of the three-quarter match.

But Reyes said his players gained more in terms of their continuous adjustments from their PBA style of play copied from the American NBA.

"In the US, it’s speed and quickness while in the international arena it’s more on size and physicality," he said.

"The physicality is the biggest adjustment to make. We’ve got to have the ability to handle hard contacts, unlike in the PBA where there’re no hand checks and a bump is a foul.

"In international play, you’ve got to defend against bone-jarring screens, get used to being constantly hit and be prepared for a veritable no-blood, no-foul rule."

Thus, Reyes added, the value of continuous play in the international arena. "It’s not the same kasi as kami-kami lang in practice. Nobody will give bone-jarring picks and hits, no matter how hard the practices are," he explained.

Most of the Nationals have seemingly gotten used to the idea. They were all upbeat in the game against the Iranians, but, per Reyes’ instructions, did not exert too much effort in fighting the screens and going after the usual known shooters.

Focus was almost entirely on perfecting the Nationals’ executions, which can also be used against Lebanon’s Blue Stars during the Champions Cup quarterfinals Friday.

A twist was even added to the physicality aspect by Asi Taulava, who was called for a dubious foul after being entangled with 6-foot-10 Ali Doraghi during a rebound play. When Doraghi tried to apologize while they were heading downcourt, Taulava yelled: "I don’t care!"

"I was just trying to get into his head. Now he’s scared of me," Taulava explained during a break in play.

pachador
05-20-2007, 05:14 AM
i1.) dont know how much 6'9" japet has improved in the US, but if he has then .......
2.) Joe Devance is tall with a well-built frame. he seems closer to 6'8" judging from the photos, and he just flew in for PBL-toyota-balintawak.
3.) the mysterious 7'0" Ronnie Aguilar(if a fil-am indeed?)
4.) one of the PBA bigmen - washington, kelly williams, menk, Pena (Pena might be a good candidate because he already played for Chot Reyes national team in the last 2 years yata so he has the experience )




RP 5 cast under review
By Joaquin Henson


Sunday, May 20, 2007
Page: 1
PBA commissioner Noli Eala said the other day the San Miguel Beer-Philippine team roster will be reviewed for possible tweaking after returning from the SEABA Championships in Ratchaburi, Thailand, with a qualifying ticket to the FIBA-Asia joust in Tokushima, Japan, on July 28-Aug. 5.

Although Eala saw no difficulty claiming one of two FIBA-Asia slots from the SEABA qualifiers, he said the danger of an ambush exists and will not be discounted.

Thailand insisted on hosting the SEABA tournament as a milestone event in the year-long celebration of King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s 80th birthday on Dec. 5, rejecting a late bid from Manila.

“I’m sure Thailand is preparing to win,” said Eala. “I heard they’re recalling four or five players from the US and Europe to play for the national team. I was told one of them plays in a European commercial league.”

Likely recruits for the Thai squad include Oun Savueth of St. Claire in Canada, Saelee Kao of Mendocino Community College in California and junior varsity cager Krit Vichaiwatamapanich of Worcester Academy in Massachusetts.

Indonesia is another threat. In the recent SEABA Champions Cup in Jakarta, Indonesia upset the Philippines in the eliminations but lost in a rematch for the crown. The tournament, however, featured imports and the Philippines was represented by PBL cagers.

The top two finishers in the SEABA Championships will represent the Southeast Asian zone in Tokushima.

Eala said the Philippine team coming home from Ratchaburi is a big man away from looming as a darkhorse contender in FIBA-Asia.

“After SEABA, I think the composition of the team will be reviewed,” said Eala. “In Tehran, we saw the caliber of players the Middle East countries will use in Tokushima. My feeling is we’re still a big man short but it’s all up to coach Chot (Reyes) whose emphasis is outside shooting ability for FIBA-Asia. If ever we make it to the Olympics, I’m sure there will be another review of the lineup, possibly to bring in bigger guys.”

To prepare for Tokushima, Eala said plans are being worked out for a dual meet against China’s national farm squad next month and a four-team pocket tournament involving Japan, Korea and Angola or Senegal or Lebanon after the PBA semifinals and before the finals in July.

Eala said China will not send its A-team to Tokushima, preferring to keep Yao Ming and other first stringers for the Stankovic Cup in Beijing on July 28-Aug. 2. Besides, the FIBA-Asia meet is a qualifier for the 2008 Olympics and China, as host nation, is guaranteed a spot. The top two Tokushima finishers will represent Asia in the Olympics and if China fails to make it to the finals, there will be three Asian teams in Beijing.

“China is gearing for the Olympics and they feel they can gain more playing against European teams in the Stankovic Cup than Asian teams in Tokushima,” said Eala. “We’re negotiating for the B-team, headed by Ji Yianlian, to play our national team in a series in Manila. Then, we’ll arrange the pocket tournament. Lebanon has sent word it wants to play and they’re willing to come on their own. These games will make us ready for Tokushima.”

Eala said the Philippines should be prepared to battle a lot of tough teams in FIBA-Asia.

“As host, Japan will enjoy the homecourt advantage so they’re a threat,” said Eala. “Then there’s Korea which is bringing a brand-new team we don’t know about. The Middle East countries are tough, too. Qatar, Iran and Jordan finished 2-3-4 behind China in the last Asian Games. Then, you’ve got the former Russian states like Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. China, of course, is a given as a shoo-in. It won’t be easy but if we play our kind of game, anything can happen, regardless of the odds.”

But the first marching order is to clinch a ticket to Tokushima by entering the finals in Ratchaburi.



I wonder which other "big guy" Eala is thinking of reinforcing the team to battle the 7 footers of the competition?* We don't have that many 6'9 or bigger than Asi, and who can defend well.* 6'9 Andy Siegle (always injured)?* 6'9 Marlou Aquino (too soft and lazy)?* The only other strong centers I can think of are Menk, Pena, Thoss, Adducul but theyre all 6'7 or shorter.

jaybanes42
05-20-2007, 09:51 PM
my future rp 5

gameface_one
05-22-2007, 01:47 PM
Far from best form, RP five settles for 4th

Qataris blast Filipinos by 20


Inquirer
Last updated 03:37am (Mla time) 05/22/2007


Final standings -- 1. Saba Battery (Iran); 2. Al Jalaa (Syria); 3 Al Rayyan (Qatar); 4. San Miguel-RP; 5. Blue Star (Lebanon); 6. Astana Tigers (Kazakhstan); 7. Young Cagers (India); 8. Al Muharraq (Bahrain)

TEHRAN -- At this point, we are very far from the best Asian teams.

This was how coach Chot Reyes rated the Philippine quintet that wound up in fourth place after taking a 95-75 loss from Qatar’s Al Rayyan Sunday in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup at the Azadi Stadium here.

Saba Battery later held off Syria’s Al Jalaa, 83-75, to secure host Iran’s first-ever crown in Asia’s premier club championship.

The Filipinos, playing under the banner of San Miguel Corp., actually improved on their fifth place finish in 2005, but Reyes said his boys have a long way to go in their buildup for the FIBA Asia Championship in July where they hope to secure a slot in next year’s Beijing Olympics.

“The number one lesson is the realization that we are, at this point, very far from the best Asian teams,” said Reyes of the all-pro RP squad, which finished with two wins against five losses in a tournament where its taller, heftier rivals enjoyed the services of two imports each.

“If the FIBA Asia were played today, our chances would be very slim. At the same time, however, it is good that we learned these lessons now while we still have two months to improve.

“At the end of our game, I just asked each player to think long and hard about where he is at this point and where he wants to be come July 28 (the start of the FIBA Asia in Tokushima, Japan). Only when each individual improves will the team improve.”

The Nationals now focus their attention on the Seaba championship set May 24-28 in Ratchaburri, Thailand, which is the qualifier for the FIBA Asia.

After the Seaba, where the Filipinos are overwhelming favorites, they resume their training by attending a basketball camp in Belgrade on June 12-20.

The Nationals actually held their own in the first half against the Qataris, who boast of seven-foot import Jacob Nonemacher and a host of naturalized players.

The Qataris were also playing only their fifth game in nine playdates and this showed in the way they repeatedly beat the Filipinos in transition and hustle plays.

The Filipinos’ shooting was also off although the Qataris managed to pull away for good only after unleashing a 17-5 run in the third period that staked them to a 67-44 lead.

Realizing the Filipinos’ cause was hopeless, Reyes concentrated on perfecting their set plays.

The scores:
QATAR 95 -- Musa 26, Ali 20, A. Ali 12, Abdi 10, Saeed 10, Mohammed 6, Nonemacher 5, Salem 0.
SAN MIGUEL-RP 75 -- Ritualo 18, Hontiveros 16, Seigle 12, Caguioa 8, Alapag 7, Raymundo 7, Pennisi 6, Taulava 1, De Ocampo 0, Villanueva 0, Helterbrand 0.
Quarters: 20-19; 44-35; 71-52; 95-75

gameface_one
05-22-2007, 01:50 PM
Chot sees rocky road ahead
mb.com.ph





TEHRAN — The Philippines does not stand a chance against Asia’s best team if the tournament is held now, according to national coach Chot Reyes.


"We are at this point very far from the best Asian teams," said Reyes after watching the San Miguel-RP team absorbed a 95-75 defeat at the hands of Qatar’s Al Rayyan Sunday at the close of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup.

The loss relegated the Nationals to fourth place in the event won by the host country’s Saba battery which whipped Syria’s Al Jalaa, 83-75.

Reyes said the tournament served as an eye-opener.

"If the FIBA Asia were played today, then our chances would be very slim. However, it is good that we learned these lessons now while we still have two months to improve," said Reyes.

The flamboyant RP coach said the team had a fruitful dugout session after the loss.

"At the end of our game, I asked each player to think long and hard about where he is at this point and where he wants to be come July 28. Only by each individual improving will the team improve," said Reyes.

The FIBA Asia Men’s championship is slated July 28-Aug. 5 in Tokushima, Japan.

Before the Asian tournament, the Nationals need to top the SEABA championship set May 24-28 in Ratchaburri, Thailand.

They are expected to win the event handily after which they will proceed to a basketball camp in Belgrade on June 12-20. Next is an invitational tournament in Qatar on June 23-28 before playing its final tune-up — a four-team invitational being hatched by the PBA on July 4- 7, right after the semifinals of the ongoing Fiesta Cup.

Against the Qataris , the Filipinos were repeatedly beaten in transition and hustle plays.

Poor shooting enabled the Qataris to unleash one surge after another, the most telling a 17-5 run in the third period that staked them to a 67-44 lead.

Once Reyes realized the Filipinos’ cause was hopeless, he concentrated on honing the plays while reserving the likes of Mark Caguioa, Jayjay Helterbrand, Kerby Raymundo and Rico Villanueva for the SEABA.

The scores:

Qatar 95 — Musa 26, Ali 20, A. Ali 12, Abdi 10, Saeed 10, Mohammed 6, Nonemacher 5, Salem 0.

San Miguel-RP 75 — Ritualo 18, Hontiveros 16, Seigle 12, Caguioa 8, Alapag 7, Raymundo 7, Pennisi 6, Taulava 1, De Ocampo 0, Villanueva 0, Helterbrand 0.

Quarters: 20-19; 44-35; 71-52; 95-75.

gameface_one
05-22-2007, 01:51 PM
The basketball wish



By Ed Picson
mb.com.ph

WHEN THE basketball brouhaha was finally settled a couple of months ago, basketball fans cried hallelujah and hailed the dawning of a new era in Philippine basketball.


Many were optimistic that with the agreement finally forged between the contending parties that had been clashing for almost two years, we would be well on our way towards reestablishing supremacy in the sport that has enraptured the Filipino sports fan, who believes that our basketball players’ talent is at par with the best of them.

Although it is acknowledged that we are handicapped by the fact that we are not as tall as other nationalities, it is generally believed that our basketball wizardry can carry us through, if not in the Olympics or World Championships, at least in our neck of the woods-in Asia.

And so it was that a collective howl was raised when the BAP sent out inferior teams to international competitions where we inevitably suffered one embarrassing defeat after another.

The call to remedy the situation eventually led to the formation of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) with no less than respected businessman-sportsman Manny Pangilinan at the helm.

After numerous negotiations, it was finally decided that a new organization combining the two groups would be formed, called the BAP-SBP.

Grudgingly, the Filipino fan accepted the new arrangement, so long as the understanding was that the best players would henceforth be sent to international competitions.

This was immediately rewarded by a championship win at the SEABA Champions Cup last month where PBL titleholder Harbor Centre made possible our participation in the just-concluded FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, Iran.

The SMC-National team, which has been training assiduously for the past few months under Coach Chot Reyes, was tapped to represent the country to the top-caliber competition.

There were no false hopes given, but still some quarters raised their eyebrows at the 4th place finish of the team, despite going import-less against teams which were reinforced by foreigners as imports and/or naturalized players.

Reyes, as well as PBA Commissioner Noli Eala, who was at the games, stressed that this is part of the learning experience and the long-range plan which includes the quest for a berth in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Despite the naysayers, I think it would be wise to allow those on whose shoulders have fallen the responsibility to resuscitate our fallen image in international basketball to implement their program.

Nobody ever said it was going to be easy, but it is obvious we are putting our best foot forward.

It has been quite a time since we were exposed to the international brand of basketball and it will take time for our players to adjust to it.

Even the mighty United States suffered a monumental licking in last year’s World Basketball Championships in Japan.

Despite being represented by NBA superstars, they could only manage to finish 3rd behind Spain and Greece.

I feel the national team is on the right track and deserves our support especially at a time when their spirits may be a little low. The team is the best we have and they have been working hard.

This is what we asked for. We have to believe we can also get what we wished for.

* * * * *

Corollary to the above, I talked to Comm. Eala a while back and was surprised to learn from him that the search for the SBP executive director is still ongoing.

He informed us that a committee was formed to make recommendations for the all-important post which entails the running of the day-to-day affairs of the organization.

I was even more surprised when Comm. Eala told me that there was another nominee for the post who was interviewed by the committee.

All along I thought that only Patrick Gregorio, the hotelier brother of coaches Ryan and Allan, was being considered.

It turns out that Dr. Jay Adalem, a 36-year-old medical doctor who is also preparing to take the bar, was also asked to submit his resume and his plans if appointed to the post.

Adalem is president and prime mover of the NAASCU (National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities), a vibrant basketball league which has 12 member-schools, including his family’s St. Clare College of Caloocan.

It is hoped that the decision will be made soon as to who between Gregorio and Adalem is going to be the executive director so that the BAP-SBP could finally get its programs going.

gameface_one
05-26-2007, 05:04 PM
RP 5 only 60 percent of where it should be
By Joaquin Henson
Saturday, May 26, 2007
Philippine Star



PBA commissioner Noli Eala said the other day the San Miguel Beer-Philippine team’s baptism of fire in the recent FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran was a wake-up call and a reminder that a lot of work remains to be done before transforming the national squad into a serious contender for an Olympic ticket.

Eala, who left yesterday morning with San Miguel Corp. assistant vice president Robert Non to join the Philippine team for the SEABA Championships in Rachaburi, rattled off a long laundry list of things to do in preparing for the Olympic qualifiers in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5.

At the moment, Eala said the Philippines is only 60 percent in terms of level of play to be competitive for a finals slot in the Tokushima joust.

“The good thing about playing in Tehran is now, we know where we are relative to the competition we expect from the Middle East countries and Kazakhstan in Tokushima,” said Eala. “Unfortunately, I think we’re about No. 8 in the standings behind China, Qatar, Korea, Chinese-Taipei, Iran, Syria and Kazakhstan, not necessarily in that order. And we can’t discount Lebanon. We’ve got two months to shape up.”

Eala said while the job seems daunting, it’s not a mission impossible. “I’m confident we can still get it done but it won’t be easy,” he added. “After the SEABA Championships, (coach) Chot (Reyes) will probably review the composition of the team.If there are any changes, they’ll be made before the team leaves for Belgrade to play five Serbian professional teams from June 12-20.”

Recent Manila visitor and FIBA referee Alan Richardson arranged the Belgrade series which will toughen the nationals even more for Tokushima.

Eala said an invitation to play in the Jones Cup in Taipei on July 2-9 is being considered as Korea and Japan are reportedly sending their national teams to compete. If the invitation is accepted, the Philippines will back out of a Qatar pocket tournament starting June 25 with Gulf State countries.

“We’ve gotten a taste of how the Middle East countries play in Tehran so it may be redundant to play in Qatar although we’re keeping the door open,” said Eala. “Chot is anxious to scout Korea and Japan. We’d like to play their national teams and the opportunity is in the Jones Cup.”

Eala said the PBA is close to finalizing a pocket tournament involving Iran, Syria and China’s team B in Manila on July 12-15. The Chinese first team, starring Yao Ming, will not compete in Tokushima and is booked to play in the Stankovic Cup in Beijing on July 28-Aug. 2 instead. China’s team B will represent the defending FIBA-Asia champion in Tokushima.

Additionally, the Philippines will play a series of games with Lebanon whose national team will set up a 10-day training camp here in July.

Eala said the quality of competition in Tehran was an eye-opener and could trigger a shake-up in the team roster. He mentioned the possibility of tapping James Yap, Yancy de Ocampo, Willie Miller, Kelly Williams, Jay Washington and Nic Belasco to beef up the pool.

“Against Syria, we were clobbered by their Brazilians,” said Eala. “Andre Barbosa, who’s a 6-8 point guard, was unstoppable. In the semifinals, he shot three triples in the first four plays and we hardly challenged him on the switch from a pick. He passes like Magic Johnson and dominates the game. Qatar’s Yaseem Ismael posted up our guys, teasing and mocking them as he did what he wanted. Our middle was always open because we weren’t quick enough to recover. On offense, we need our big men to develop a medium-range game. We need to be fitter, quicker to the ball and more daring than our opponents because we’re smaller.”

Eala said the importance of being in tip-top shape is exemplified in the way Manny Pacquiao trains like a Spartan for a fight. He hinted at tapping the services of a nutritionist after watching some of the players gorge on French fries and hamburgers and gulp down soft drinks without realizing the impact on their bodies during a game.

true.blue
05-27-2007, 12:14 AM
Eala said the quality of competition in Tehran was an eye-opener and could trigger a shake-up in the team roster. He mentioned the possibility of tapping James Yap, Yancy de Ocampo, Willie Miller, Kelly Williams, Jay Washington and Nic Belasco to beef up the pool.

“Against Syria, we were clobbered by their Brazilians,” said Eala. “Andre Barbosa, who’s a 6-8 point guard, was unstoppable. In the semifinals, he shot three triples in the first four plays and we hardly challenged him on the switch from a pick. He passes like Magic Johnson and dominates the game. Qatar’s Yaseem Ismael posted up our guys, teasing and mocking them as he did what he wanted. Our middle was always open because we weren’t quick enough to recover. On offense, we need our big men to develop a medium-range game. We need to be fitter, quicker to the ball and more daring than our opponents because we’re smaller.”



I wonder who in the team are in danger of losing their slots? Looking at the stats of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, plus the two games in SEABA (though we are just limited to point production): Helterbrand is not doing well in the PG position having 5 scoreless games out of 9. On the 2 position, both Hontiveros and Ritualo, highly depended upon for point production, have scored 5pts or less in 5/9 games. Then there's Tony dela Cruz in the 3 position who has missed 3 games plus scored 2 pts or none in another 3 games.

On the other hand, the team's most consistent good performers are Caguioa followed by Siegle, the only ones averaging double figures in pt production at 15.7 and 14.7 respectively. These 2 guys plus Taulava are the only guys who can be sure of their slots.

gameface_one
05-27-2007, 05:19 PM
Olympic elims tough job for RP 5


The Philippine Star

RATCHABURI, Thailand – The FIBA-Asia qualifying tournament for the 2008 Beijing Olympics will be a wide-open race.

FIBA-Asia technical director Lee Kak Kuan, 57, a Malaysian retired military man who’s been all over the region supervising big international tournaments, made the prediction in an interview with The STAR here on Saturday.

"It’s gonna be exciting, it’s gonna be tough. It’s anybody’s race specially with China, most probably, not sending its best players since it’s already seeded in the Olympics," said Lee.

The Malaysian cage official, a trusted lieutenant of FIBA-Asia secretary-general Datu Yeo Choo-Hoch, pointed to the Gulf and Arab countries like Qatar, Lebanon, Iran and Syria as those which have made dramatic improvements and are now among the top contenders in Asian championships.

"In the old days, after China, there’s only South Korea. But everybody has improved," said Lee.

As for the Philippines, featuring the country’s millionaire pro stars, Lee said it may need to boost its stocks more if it is to achieve its supreme goal of qualifying for the Beijing Games.

"The Philippines is a good team. Given more training and preparation, they could give the other countries a good run for their money," said Lee.

Lee sees no hindrance to the SMC-RP team’s lack of ceiling.

"You need height in basketball but height alone doesn’t guarantee victory. Height must come with good physique and good technique. If your team plays with good team spirit and the needed preparation, then they have a chance," said Lee.

Believing the Philippines has a big pool of talents, Lee said the SEA Games in December could be a walk in the park for any RP team.

"You love basketball so much that in any backyard, in any open space, Filipinos play the game. With or without the pros, they can perform well in the SEA Games," he said.

Lee welcomed the return of the Philippines in the FIBA roster, saying it made a big impact at least in the region.

He said he could make a better prediction for the FIBA-Asia championship after the draw for the groupings on June 6 in Tokushima. Sixteen teams will be divided into four groups for the elimination round.

"I don’t think China is bringing their best team because they may not want to get hurt. No need since they’re already seeded in the Olympics. Their absence will make the competition more interesting," said Lee. Nelson Beltran

gameface_one
05-27-2007, 05:24 PM
Miller, Williams eyed for RP five


By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 00:16am (Mla time) 05/27/2007


RATCHABURI, Thailand—Whether or not the Philippines completes a sweep in the current Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) men’s championship here, no player in the current roster would be assured of a slot to the Fiba-Asia tournament this July.

“We still have to evaluate the performances of the players,” RP coach Chot Reyes said, reiterating that the team’s goal will be to qualify for the Asian men’s championship that will be held in Tokushima, Japan.

That tournament will serve as the qualifier to the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Aside from performances, Reyes added that injuries may force the makeup of the squad, just as they did in the current team.

Multitasking swingman Tony dela Cruz was relegated to the injured list after spraining an ankle, forcing the RP coaching staff to call in high-flying Air21 forward Ni no “KG” Canaleta. Red Bull’s 6-foot-9 reinforcer, Mick Pennisi is also suffering from a sore gum and may miss the squad’s first game in this tournament.

Reyes added that he was seriously looking at two players who have a legitimate shot at slots to the national roster for the Tokushima joust: Alaska playmaker Willie Miller and Sta. Lucia super rookie Kelly Williams.

In the meantime, Reyes hopes that the Philippine Basketball Association will adjust its rules of officiating to keep up with the international style of play.

“We can keep the 12 minutes per quarter and the six fouls per player rule if we want, but we really need to allow more physicality in the pro league if we want to get used to the international style of play,” said the national mentor.

Reyes said the league calls a lot of fouls that international referees let go, such as hand-checks and hard, lateral-moving screens.

Meanwhile, RP-Harbour Centre coach Junel Baculi joined the national squad here to scout the Southeast Asian teams that the Philippines will play in the Thailand SEA Games.

Baculi, however, has his eyes squarely on Thailand’s national squad, which will enjoy the comforts of playing at home. The Philippines is a traditional heavyweight in Southeast Asian hoops, but it missed the last SEA Games because it fell under Fiba suspension due to a leadership squabble.

Baculi is accompanied here by Louie Alas.

Baculi hopes to talk to the PBA in the hopes of getting next year’s batch of rookies to suit up for the biennial meet.

gameface_one
05-27-2007, 05:26 PM
More training will make RP world beater –FIBA official



By TITO TALAO
mb.com.ph



RATCHABURI, Thailand — Lee Kak Kuan, a slightly-built man of 57 years with nimble steps, a thin salt-and-pepper moustache, balding gray hair, bright eyes and a quick smile, may partly hold the key to how far San Miguel-Pilipinas will go in its daunting mission to qualify to the Beijing Olympics next year.


A retired lieutenant colonel in the Malaysian army and a close friend of FIBA-Asia Secretary-General Dato Yeoh Choo-Hock, Lee is the technical director of the International Basketball Federation, or FIBA, and is the top man in the organizational and operations ladder of international basketball competitions in the continent from now up to 2010.

"I run the tournaments and provide technical assistance to the hosting countries, making sure the games are played in accordance to the rules of FIBA," says Lee after breakfast Saturday, the third day of the Southeast Asian Basketball Association Men’s Championship in this rustic town 100 kilometers west of Bangkok.

He was around when the Philippines was suspended by FIBA "because of internal problems," was there in the Doha Asian Games and the Saitama World Championship, and he will be in Tokushima, Japan in late July to pick the referees for the FIBA-Asia Championship, the qualifying tournament for the 2008 Olympic Games in China.

In fact, Lee will be with Dato Yeoh on June 6 in Tokushima for the FIBA-Asia draw to determine the groupings of the 16 countries entered in the Olympic qualifier where only one team, outside of China, will make it all the way to Beijing.

The traditional powers — China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan — Lee believes, will be the teams to reckon with in the July 28-Aug. 5 tournament, with the Gulf and West Asian nations — Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Syria, Iran and Lebanon — "giving the others a good fight."

Having seen the all-pro SMC-RP team in its opening SEABA game against Singapore Friday, Lee says that with "more training and preparation after you return home, you can give the other countries a good run."

That’s assuming SMC-RP gets past Indonesia (Saturday), Malaysia (Sunday) and host Thailand (Monday), goals that are actually modest at best, considering the difference in talent and maturity between the Philippines and its remaining opponent.

Married with three grown-up children, Lee retired from military service in 1994 after "33 years, six months and 14 days," slipping into his uniform in the "confrontation with Indonesia" in 1963 and against communist insurgents in the latter years.

He is now three years away from considering retirement as FIBA-Asia technical director "That’s when the FIBA elections come up," he explains.

"If Dato Yeoh remains in office, then I stay on. He’s a good person and I would like to work for him some more."

Lee, who belted out two songs from the early ‘60s during the SEABA welcome party Friday night, then added laughing: "But if he doesn’t, I might consider a second profession. I’d been invited, you see, to come back here to sing for hotel guests."

An oldies-but-goldies singer who once carried a gun and now has an iron grip on officiating in FIBA-Asia tournaments.

NOTE: The Philippines was playing Indonesia as of press time late in the night.

gameface_one
05-28-2007, 08:25 AM
Can the RP national team find its true name?


By Recah Trinidad
Inquirer
Last updated 07:24am (Mla time) 05/28/2007


MANILA, Philippines -- When was the last time you saw the Philippine national basketball team play?

In the 1972 Munich Summer Games, where the RP national squad had its last Olympic outing?

Or in the 1974 World Basketball Championships in Puerto Rico, which marked the last time a Philippine national basketball contingent fought in a full-scale international cage war.

There were glowing ringside reports about an RP national squad, pillared by half-Filipinos, on its sweet way to sweeping the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) men’s basketball championship in a rustic suburb of Thailand.

Before the Thai countryside picnic, there was this man-sized world club tournament in Tehran where our national squad competed to mark RP’s return to the international field following the lifting of a ban imposed by the international basketball federation (FIBA) on the country.

* * *

Sorry to say this but, in both occasions -- the Tehran test and the SEABA bash -- there was no clear sign the Philippines was represented by a squad that could be called truly national.

No, not solely because it was not pure Pinoy blood that fueled the national squad, whose roster had been left open to half-Filipinos.

For one, it’s still hard to define the likes of Mick Pennissi, who could’ve descended from a Roman centurion, and Asi Taulava, of colorful Tongan hairdo and roots, as distinctly Pinoy.

However, it was not in proper national appearance and looks alone that the RP national cage squad was found lacking.

* * *

There was clearly a short supply of the fabled Filipino character -- shaped up by courage and determination through the years -- with inborn qualities that had sent the Philippine flag soaring proudly in various international fields.

The RP team currently campaigning in Thailand is indeed the Philippine national team.

It cannot be called any other thing.

But one thing that will continue to separate it from national squads during the times of Loyzaga, Mumar, Badion, Reynoso, Melencio, Bernardo and, yes, Jaworski, was the absence of fear among these basketball idols.

Looking back in comparison, it’s easy to say that, while those great Pinoy cagers would go out to do battle, the current breed of national players go abroad mainly to compete and play, nothing more.

* * *

Loyzaga, Mumar, Badion et al were devoted basketball warriors, our current national cagers, the way they had allowed themselves to be pushed around in the all-revealing Tehran test, were basically ball players.

Who knows? There could be a few in the current RP squad who are candidates to be future Badions or Mumars?

But it’s either their toughness and grit were being shaken by the soft, borrowed pillars in the national squad or they had been rendered gutless by the style of local officiating in the PBA.

The realization would come late, but PBA officials would themselves admit that our pro referees were partly to blame for the lost, undecided stand by the RP squad in the Tehran cage battles.

The way they call it in the Philippine Basketball Association, there was the great tendency to de-emphasize on tough defense.

Naturally, this would result in double jeopardy, as sweet officiating also shaped up so-so offensive fighters.

* * *

Nobody would openly admit the fault, but at least, there’s now this frantic rush to set the house in order.

They wanted to turn bellyachers into pure warriors overnight.

Sad to say, we’re all faced with a tough, if not impossible task.

Coach Chot Reyes may have the right formula: field players with both talent and deep heroic character.

The call of the day is to bring back the courage and nationalism that had fueled our Philippine squads of the past, from the PI team debut in the 1936 Berlin Olympics all the way down to the RP team Olympic farewell in Munich.

Coach Chot Reyes has the winning concoction, but will he be able to dig for the proper components?

Can the national coaching staff squeeze out great, fearless basketball from a mongrel national team.

gameface_one
05-28-2007, 08:28 AM
We need more exposure — Seigle



By WAYLON GALVEZ
mb.com.ph

RATCHABURI, Thailand — With the way they are mowing down their rivals in the SEABA Men’s Championship, Danny Seigle believes they can put up a decent showing in the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship in Japan.


But not now — or even next month.

Learning their lessons well in the FIBA-Asian Club Championship in Iran two weeks back – especially about international plays and rules – Seigle said they’re now playing with lots of confidence and maturity.

Seigle, however, said they need more time and more tournaments to compete in order for them to prepare for the FIBA-Asian Championship slated in July.

"I think we’re now a different team compared to last month," said Seigle, who ruptured his Achilles in an exhibition game against Qatar in 2002 that denied him a chance to don the national colors in the Busan Asian Games.

The 6-foot-7 versatile forward said that the process they’re going through is not easy, though.

While they have to adjust to one another’s style, they also must adapt to international plays, physically and mentally.

"That’s the hardest part, learning to play the FIBA (international) way. We’re used to the PBA style. It takes time, but we’re learning. That’s the important thing I guess," said Seigle, who is averaging 14.5 points in the team’s first two games.

For him, the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, Iran last month was an eye opener for the nationals.

"It was tough (playing in Iran), but we learned so much there," said Seigle. "We learned how to play in international. If we can get a few more tournaments like that, it’s better."

The team, according to him, is also developing a good chemistry. He’s not sure how will it affect the team if Reyes decides to make some changes.

Reyes said he will evaluate the performance of his players after the tournament.

Still being considered in the team are Willie Miller and Kelly Williams.

"For me I’m all focused. One or two (changes) may not hurt the team emotionally. But I think the line up right now is competitive," said Seigle.

The FIBA-Asia championship will have the best 16 teams in the continent divided into four groups. The top two teams in each group will advance in the crossover quarterfinal round.

gameface_one
05-28-2007, 08:30 AM
Asian cage stint consumes Seigle


By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 07:14am (Mla time) 05/28/2007


RATCHABURI, THAILAND -- Two things excite Danny Seigle nowadays.

One is the thought of the Philippines nailing that cherished Olympic slot.

The other? Finally getting a chance to strut his wares in the Asian scene.

“I’m so motivated to play,” said the 6-foot-7 forward of San Miguel Beer.

Quite understandably.

Seigle had his first chance to represent the country in the 2002 Asian Games in the South Korean port city of Busan and prepared a whole year to don the national colors.

But then came that unfortunate incident during an exhibition game against Qatar, just a few weeks before the team was to depart for the Asiad.

“I remember that day so clearly,” said Seigle said. “I was backpedaling and just as I went up to go for a block, I felt a rush of pain in my leg. Right there, I knew I ruptured my Achilles (tendon).”

Small wonder the sweet-shooting, high-leaping forward has been one of the hardest workers in the RP-San Miguel squad.

salsa caballero
05-28-2007, 10:25 PM
We just swept the SEABA tournament today, nailing the Thais by 20, 96-76. Reports have it that Chot was furious over our sloppy play. In fairness, it's really pretty hard to get motivated, especially if the players know that the title, the FIBA-ASIA slot and the game are pretty much in the bag already. That said, we should learn to focus on ALL games, bearing or no bearing, if we are to make it to Beijing....

true.blue
05-28-2007, 10:47 PM
I would think Helterbrand is in danger of losing his PG position to Willie Miller to get more offensive options from the guards, what with SGs Ritualo and Hontiveros playing so-so.* Then on the small forward position, only Siegle is consistently scoring - the other 2 SFs Ranidel de Ocampo and Tony dela Cruz (injured) will most probably be replaced by Kelly Williams and Washington or Belasco. Calaneta may be too one-dimensional for the job.

gameface_one
05-29-2007, 09:02 AM
New faces to suit up for Chot?


By JOAQUIN HENSON
The Philippine Star

The composition of the San Miguel Corp.-Philippine team will be under review despite sweeping the SEABA Championships in Ratchaburi to clinch a ticket to the Olympic qualifiers in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5.

The call for a reevaluation came after the Philippines encountered rough sailing at the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran where the national team finished fourth two weeks ago.

The quality of opposition in Tehran was a far cry from what the Philippine squad faced in Ratchaburi. In Tehran, the Philippines defeated Bahrain and Lebanon but lost to Iran, Kazakhstan, Syria twice and Qatar. In Ratchaburi, the national team was unbeaten in four games.

SBP executive director Patrick Gregorio said Monday PBA commissioner Noli Eala, team manager Robert Non of San Miguel Corp. and coach Chot Reyes will meet to reassess the team make-up after arriving from Ratchaburi.

"I still think a review is necessary," said Eala in a text from Ratchaburi. "While victory in SEABA is a feat which we have to celebrate, it’s not a complete and accurate gauge of how our team will fare in Tokushima. I think some players are still playing below expectations. We will meet Chot when we get to Manila."

A cage expert, who declined to be identified, said Reyes could also use more help in his staff. Aboy Castro and Nash Racela were his assistants in Tehran and Ratchaburi.

"Aboy and Nash do a good job but their experience is limited," said the expert. "Chot needs some generals to back him up, guys with extensive head coaching experience who can suggest mid-game adjustments, get involved in pre-game and timeout huddles and develop strategies."

Norman Black, Joseph Uichico and Tim Cone used to assist Reyes in the national team’s once-a-week practices during the formative months but they’re no longer available because of head coaching commitments. Among former PBA head coaches who could be tapped as Reyes’ backups are Eric Altamirano, Alfrancis Chua and Joel Banal.

"It’ll be a war in Tokushima and we’ve got to show up ready for war with our best weapons," said the expert.

A review of the roster will consider bringing in big men with a potent mid-range game, quick combo guards and athletic wingmen with the ability to break down the defense. But the problem of making changes in the cast at this stage will be chemistry. Another problem is whether PBA mother teams will agree to giving up players with the Fiesta Conference playoffs about to begin.

Some players who may fit in the national team are James Yap, Willie Miller, Kelly Williams and Jay Washington.

"If Yap can accept a team role, he would be a good addition because he has range and a solid body," said another expert. "Washington is a scorer who’s big, athletic and strong. Miller isn’t afraid to penetrate and score. He’ll dish if he has to but he won’t back down from anybody. Williams can play above the rim and will help out on both ends."

In Tehran, the national team had difficulty adjusting to time conditions because Manila is about five hours ahead. When the players checked in to start a game at 9 p.m., it was like playing at 2 a.m. That explained why in several games, they were outrun and outhustled. But there was no excuse in losing to Qatar by 20 points because the game began at 5 p.m. It was evident the players had to be in better physical condition to battle bigger and taller opponents.

"It’s all about respect," said the expert. "The Philippines lacks pit bulls like the Houston Rockets in the NBA. Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming are great players but they’re surrounded by players who can be outworked. That’s why Houston can’t get ahead in the playoffs. It was the same way with the Philippines in Tehran. The team just wasn’t respected. Respect has to be earned and the Philippines has a long way to go to earn it."

gameface_one
05-30-2007, 09:45 AM
RP 5 program under review


By NELSON BELTRAN

The Philippine Star

RATCHABURI, Thailand – With the SEABA battle won, the SMC-RP team is now looking to win the war in Tokushima.

Aware that the team is far from peak form, RP team officials intend to regroup in Manila and plot the best possible program with two months to go before the staging of the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in Tokushima, Japan.

The bulk of the delegation, headed by PBA commissioner Noli Eala, BAP-SBP executive director Patrick Gregorio and team manager Robert Non, returned to Manila Tuesday afternoon. The rest, including coach Chot Reyes, arrives Wednesday.

They meet Thursday to review their program before the team plunges back to training Monday.

While lauding the Nationals’ sweep of the five-nation SEABA men’s championship here, the officials pointed out that the tougher task lies ahead.

"This is a time to celebrate but not to relax. The true gauge is yet to come," said Eala.

"There is still room for improvement in terms of conditioning, scouting, and strengthening of the team composition, including players and the coaching staff," added Eala.

Gregorio, appointed to the position recently, said with two months to go before the Olympic qualifier, the team has to improve on its skills and focus on conditioning.

"Those are the things we are going to address the most in the next couple of days," he said.

Reyes said minor changes in the players’ roster are forthcoming while the officials hinted at the entry of additional coaches to assist Reyes.

"He (Reyes) needs help," said Eala.

In a bid to boost the roster, Reyes is looking to recruit Willie Miller, Kelly Williams and US collegiate player Gabe Norwood.

"We’ll get more guys and make them travel with us. We’ll make the final decision on our lineup probably right there in Tokushima," said Reyes.

But Reyes’ original plan to bring the team to Belgrade then to Qatar for a series of games may be scuttled.

"We think the Jones Cup is more attractive since out of the nine teams already entered, seven are national teams which we may face in the FIBA Asia. So I think it (Jones Cup) makes more sense," said Eala.

Meantime, the group is rejoicing on the Philippines’ grand return to international play following a two-year suspension by FIBA.

"This has been a very good tournament. Somehow, winning restores a lot of confidence in our ability to play internationally," said Eala.

gameface_one
05-30-2007, 09:56 AM
RP five way off Olympic dream


By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 05:11am (Mla time) 05/30/2007


RATCHBURI, THAILAND -- The spate of routs that the RP-San Miguel squad forged in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association Men’s Championship did not create enough smoke and mirrors to blind team officials from the truth.

There’s still much work to be done to land an Olympic berth.

“There’s still room for improvement especially in conditioning, scouting and strengthening the team’s composition of players and coaches,” said Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Noli Eala, whose league was tasked by the country’s national basketball federation, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, to handle the elite programs of the sport.

Already, two personnel changes are on tap. The league is set to add a strength-and-conditioning coach who will help in the training and diet of the national squad, and a new coach to bolster the RP think tank.

Team manager Robert Non said the RP team committee composed of himself, Eala, SBP chair Ricky Vargas, national coach Chot Reyes and SBP executive director Patrick Gregorio are set to meet Thursday to discuss the changes.

Among the things also to be discussed are the planned trips of the national team. Already, the calendared trip to Qatar has been scrapped in favor of the Jones Cup.

“It’s only the beginning and we’re not even halfway through our goal of making it to the Olympics,” said Non.

Eala is not even discounting the possibility of roster changes, something Reyes had already telegraphed when he said he was seriously looking at Alaska’s Willie Miller and Sta. Lucia Realty’s Kelly Williams.

“We can see what we still need is a little more quickness, defense and consistency in our shooting,” said Eala. “Our training should be more focused on areas of weakness.”

The pricey RP squad, built out of millionaire superstars from the Philippine Basketball Association, was crafted purposely for one goal -- to earn a berth in the 2008 Olympics which Beijing is hosting.

China has an automatic slot in the Games, meaning if it wins the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in Tokushima, Japan this July, the team that finishes second will also get an Olympic slot. If it doesn’t bag the title, the team that does gets an Olympic berth.

Sam Miguel
05-30-2007, 05:19 PM
Euroleague Basketball 2006-07: Season in Review

The 2006-07 Euroleague season came to an end with Panathinaikos lifting its fourth trophy after beating CSKA in an unforgottable final, an instant classic that punctuated the excitement of the entire season. Among the biggest winners when it was over were Panathinaikos head coach Zeljko Obradovic, who added to his legend with a record-extending sixth Euroleague title; one-of-a-kind guard Dimitris Diamantidis, who not only won his third Defensive Player of the Year honor, but was also chosen both the 2007 Final Four MVP and all-Euroleague First Team member; and Fragiskos Alvertis, who became the most-crowned player of the entire 20-year Final Four era in Europe to cap his 17th season wearing the green of Panathinaikos. From runner-up CSKA, point guard Theo Papaloukas made history as the 2007 Euroleague MVP, perhaps the first reserve player ever to win such an award, while also becoming the competition's all-time leader in assists and steals. Another All-Euroleague First Team selection and Final Four participant, Luis Scola of Tau Ceramica, not only became the Euroleague's all-time top scorer, but also the first to break the 2,000-point barrier in the competition. Nikola Vujcic of Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv, Juan Carlos Navarro of Winterthur FC Barcelona and Trajan Langdon of CSKA also earned All-Euroleague first team honors. Panathinaikos, Tau Ceramica and CSKA Moscow lived up to the expectations, winning their respective regular season and Top 16 groups and making it to the Final Four. Meanwhile, Unicaja provided the biggest surprise this season, taking its Top 16 group after struggling through the regular season and then knocking off Barcelona in the playoffs. It was another Euroleague Basketball season to remember, so sit back and enjoy this summary!

The Regular Season set the tone for excitement with the very first tipoffs, as mighty Panathinaikos had to rally from a 24-point margin to down newcomer DKV Joventut 79-82 in the Euroleague's opening game in Badalona, Spain while Maccabi Elite needed overtime to edge Unicaja 106-101 at home. Surprising results continued pouring in. Partizan beat Maccabi 103-91 in Game 2 while Pau-Orthez upset CSKA 73-67 the following week. It would be the defending champions' only loss until the playoffs. Among the individual heroics that first month, Mike Batiste earned November MVP honors by leading the Greens to five victories without a loss. Vujcic, meanwhile, registered the Euroleague's second-ever triple-double - 27 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists - in a home game against Union Olimpija. Pau-Orthez continued to surprise, taking its third road win 106-110 in double-overtime at Zalgiris behind 30 points from Michael Wright. Joventut got its first victory in style, as Rudy Fernandez made an unbelievable a game-winning alley-oop tip-in against Unicaja in Malaga with just 0.1 seconds to go. That was a shot seen around the world. By the time the end-of-year break arrived, teams like Tau, Olympiacos, CSKA and Barcelona were virtually qualified for the Top 16, while Panathinaikos was already in and Scola was chosen MVP for December. The fight to make the next round highlighted the final dates of the regular season. Eldo Napoli edged Fenerbahce Ulker 88-93 in a thrilling overtime game but none of them advanced to the Top 16 in the end. Meanwhile, a three-pointer by Sanchez allowed Unicaja to force overtime in Belgrade and the guests ended up beating Partizan 90-94. That win allowed Lottomatica Roma to make it to the Top 16 instead of Cibona. Dozens of Roma fans wrote Euroleague.ne Fan Mail to Sanchez to thank him for the shot. Prokom, Aris TT Bank and Partizan were among the last teams to make the Top 16, while the driving force behind a qualified newcomer, Lazaros Papadopoulos of Dynamo Moscow, earned MVP honors for January.

The Top 16 Draw grouped Tau with Lottomatica, Maccabi Elite and Pau-Orthez. CSKA had to battle against Partizan, Joventut and Joventut. Panathinaikos had to go against Efes Pilsen, Winterthur FCB and Prokom. And Dynamo headed the group that included Unicaja, Benetton and Aris. Panathinaikos left no doubt about its power by thrashing Efes and Barcelona in its first two Top 16 games at OAKA. Meanwhile, Tau sent a message that echoed everywhere by beating Maccabi 68-79 in Tel Aviv behind 19 points from Igor Rakocevic, who would end up winning the Alphonso Ford Top Scoring trophy. Joventut edged Olympiacos 58-56 in a rematch of the 1994 Euroleague final behind outstanding defense from teen sensation Ricky Rubio, who had 5 of his 7 steals in the fourth quarter. Rubio would later finish second in the Euroleague Rising Star Trophy vote, right behind his teammate, Fernandez. CSKA dominated its new group as Matjaz Smodis earned February MVP honors halfway through an undefeated round. Meanwhile Prokom got the first-ever Top 16 victory by a Polish team by defeating Efes in Istanbul to break an eight-game losing streak against the Turkish powerhouse. Game 4 happened to be pivotal in Group D, as Dynamo edge Aris 71-69 while Unicaja topped Benetton 76-79. Maccabi needed overtime to get a critical 94-98 road win against Pau in Game 5 behind 21 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists from a recovered Tal Burstein. Next, Unicaja beat Dynamo 73-62 to clinch first place in Group D. Two do-or-die showdowns took place in Game 6, as Dynamo faced Benetton for a direct playoff spot, while Olympiacos needed to beat Joventut in order to advance. Antonis Fotsis set a Euroleague record with 24 rebounds to go along with 22 points in Dynamo's 68-65 overtime win against Benetton, while Olympiacos advanced to the playoffs by beating Partizan 81-65. For helping his team become the only lower-seeded group winner, Daniel Santiago of Unicaja was named MVP for March.

The Quarterfinal Playoffs matchups were Unicaja vs. Barcelona, Tau vs. Olympiacos, Panathinaikos vs. Dynamo and CSKA vs. Maccabi. The latter was a rematch of the 2006 Euroleague title game and meant that one of those teams would miss a Final Four for the first time since 2003. Tau simply overwhelmed Olympiacos 84-59 in Game 1 on their best-of-three quarterfinal series. Rakocevic led the way for Tau with 24 points. Olympiacos faced a do-or-die situation in Game 2, but Tau advanced to its third consecutive Final Four with a 89-95 road win as Scola score 20 points, Tiago Splitter 18 and Rakocevic 17. For the first full Euroleague season of his career, Olympiacos coach Pini Gershon would miss the Final Four. Panathinaikos kept rolling and thrashed Dynamo 80-58 in Game 1 in front of 15,000 fans at OAKA. Sani Becirovic had 17 points for the Greens. Panathinaikos swept the series with a 65-73 road win in Game 2 in Moscow. Ramunas Siskauskas led the Greens with 19 points and would end up being chosen as the Euroleague's April MVP. CSKA got its 18th consecutive Euroleague win by downing Maccabi 80-58 in Game 1 behind 16 points from Langdon and 14 from David Andersen. Just when everybody expected a sweep, Maccabi hit back with a resounding 68-56 home win in Game 2. Vujcic and Lior Eliyahu combined for 28 points and 19 rebounds. CSKA bounced back from its first Euroleague loss since November and advanced to its record-breaking fifth consecutive Final Four by downing Maccabi 92-71 in Game 3. Papaloukas posted a double-double of 14 points and 10 assists. Unicaja took its first step to the Final Four with a 91-75 home win in Game 1 with its bench players contributing 54 points. Barcelona responded with a 80-58 home win in Game 2, as Navarro had 25 points on 5-of-6 triples. It all came down to the final seconds of Game 3, which Unicaja played without Santiago, who was injured. With 7.7 seconds left, Sanchez flicked his left wrist from three-point distance, the ball went down and 10,400 fans in Malaga went up as Unicaja advanced to its first-ever Final Four.

Everything was set for an outstanding Final Four in Athens, featuring the defending champion in CSKA, a home team in Panathinaikos backed by a majority of fans in OAKA, a perennial candidate in Tau and a newcomer ready to make some noise in Unicaja. CSKA faced Unicaja in the first semifinal while Panathinaikos would go against Tau Ceramica, in a rematch of last year's do-or-die playoff game that allowed Tau to advance to the Final Four. Unicaja battled CSKA despite not having Santiago and losing its best player of the night, Carlos Cabezas, midway through the third quarter to an eye injury. Unicaja would lead 46-47 early in the fourth quarter, but CSKA improved its defense and made its opponents go scoreless in the next 8 minutes for a 14-0 run that sealed the outcome. Trajan Langdon led CSKA with 13 points while Cabezas also got 13 for Unicaja. Pushed by an incredible crowd, Panathinaikos downed Tau Ceramica 67-53 in the other semifinal. Batiste and Becirovic each had 15 points for Panathinaikos, whichled 35-21 at halftime. Tau got within 53-47 with 4 minutes to go but Scola fouled out and his team ran out of chances. Two days later, Unicaja would edge Tau 74-76 for third place on a game-winning driving layup by Marcus Brown. Marko Tusek fired in 5-of-6 triples on his way to 18 points.

All that remained was a title game that will be remembered a long time for its championship-quality basketball, individual heroics and an atmosphere second to none in the history of basketball. It was simply one of the best title games in the history of the competition. Panathinaikos had a strong start but Langdon and Papaloukas got CSKA within 18-17 after 10 minutes. Milos Vujanic came off the bench and led the Greens to double-digit leads in the second quarter and a 46-36 advantage at halftime. An outstanding Papaloukas singlehandedly brought CSKA back in the third quarter, giving his team a 50-51 edge, but Diamantidis took over their duel to keep Panathinaikos a step ahead. Dejan Tomasevic became the Greens' go-to guy in the final quarter, as his three-point play gave Panathinaikos a 83-73 margin with 4 minutes to go. CSKA was not done, however, as Langdon blasted back-to-back triples to pull his team within 87-85 early in the final minute. A critical turnaround jumper by Batiste and free throws by Vujanic allowed a sea of green fans in the stands to shout out loud that once again, Panathinaikos was the King of European basketball! Diamantidis scored 15 points and displayed the needed leadership to take his team to glory. Ramunas Siskauskas, who tied a Euroleague final game record with 12 free throws made and set another with 17 attempted, shined with 20 points and 5 assists. Tomasevic added 16, Batiste and Vujanic 12 each and Nikos Hatzivrettas posted 10. Despite a game widely expected to be a defensive struggle, the final became a high-scoring thriller. Records were set by Panathinaikos for most free throws made (38) and attempted (46) in a final. The Greens also matched a final record for most points scored in the second quarter with 28. CSKA fell short in its bid to become the second straight team to win back-to-back titles, but scored the most points by a losing team in the Final Four era and the third-most in the 50-year history of European final games. Papaloukas did his best to carry the outgoing champs, scoring a career-high 23 points on 9-of-10 from the field to go with 8 assists, but it wasn't enough. Smodis finished with 18 points and Langdon wound up with 16.

The victory by Panathinaikos marked the 50th time that a champion was crowned in Europe. The Greens can lay claim after four titles in 11 seasons to being the most-accomplished club in a golden era of European basketball. And without doubt, they can claim to have inspired on May 6 in Athens one of the most compelling moments in world basketball history.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Javier Gancedo, Euroleague.net

^^^
Are we meeting any of these teams any time soon? Freakin' Theo Papaloukas is the best player in the world still not playing in the NBA.

pachador
05-31-2007, 01:53 AM
There is a simple explanation naman why we lost by big margins in Iran. Aside from playing against giants, our national team did barbell workouts and running sprints in the morning before their games against the middle-eastern teams in the afternoons. Who wouldn't get tired by such a punishing schedule ? So its true then that they went to Iran for practice. Secondly, the Joe Hooks is indeed the same Joe Hooks. Chot Reyes thumbed him down as too slow, although he might be hired by a PBA team ! Instead, the top candidates to be added are indeed Norwood and Kelly Williams for speed and power. Lastly, the reason for the change of mind in playing in the Jones Cup is because of more national teams playing in this year's Jones Cup. See article below:

Reyes to address quickness problem
By Joaquin Henson
Thursday, May 31, 2007

San Miguel Corp.– Philippine team coach Chot Reyes said yesterday without Rudy Hatfield and Rafi Reavis in the lineup, the lack of frontline quickness will be a major handicap in the FIBA-Asia Championships in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5.

“Our biggest problem is size,” said Reyes. “With Rudy and Rafi gone, we’re missing quickness from our big men. In Tehran, we beat the only teams that didn’t have a seven-footer, Bahrain and Lebanon. When we play against a team with superior size, we run out of steam because we get beat up rebounding and defending. Our outside shooting is affected by the exhaustion factor.”

But Reyes said there are ways to compensate. First is to get in tip-top physical shape and second is to reinforce the roster with stronger, more athletic and powerful players with some size.

“We plan to be the best conditioned team in Tokushima,” said Reyes. “In Tehran, we kept the guys in shape with morning sessions of lifting weights, hard sprints and conditioning drills before playing in the afternoon. It was like doing three practices in a day.”

Reyes said the team didn’t resume regular practices until last March 12 because of the uncertainty created by the FIBA suspension.

“We started from scratch,” said Reyes. “It’s not like the other national teams. We’ve got a lot of catching up to do.”

As for reinforcements, Reyes singled out Fil-Am guard Gabe Norwood of George Mason University and Sta. Lucia Realty’s Kelly Williams as top candidates.

“Gabe is a smaller version of Rafi,” said Reyes. “He’s more refined in his moves and he understands the game very well. Kelly’s more powerful and explosive. Jay Washington would’ve been a candidate, too, but it might be too late to bring him in. There’s also the problem of getting mother teams to release players.”

Reyes said he’s in contact with Norwood’s father Brian and there’s a possibility the 6-5 guard may join the national team in Belgrade for a series of games against Serbian professional clubs starting June 12.

After the Belgrade series, the national team will play in the Jones Cup in Taipei instead of the Qatar invitationals where the same Gulf State countries that saw action in Tehran are participating. Reyes said he’s eager to test the national teams of Korea, Japan and Chinese-Taipei in the Jones Cup.

Reyes ruled out recruiting 6-10 Joe Hooks, a half-Filipino center playing in New Zealand. “Singapore’s Australian coach (Gordon McLeod) has seen Hooks play and thinks Asi (Taulava) is a much more effective player,” said Reyes. “Hooks is 32, slow and won’t be able to help us in the quickness department.”

What’s encouraging is the team never gives up, said Reyes.

“In Tehran, the Iran coach (Mehran Shahintab) came up to me and complimented our guys for their attitude, that whether we were down by five or 25, we kept competing,” continued Reyes.

“We never stopped playing, no matter the gap. The scores didn’t reflect how hard we played. But the grind caught up with us when we played Syria in our eighth game on the eighth day. We were burned out playing against bigger guys. But we don’t expect that kind of schedule in Tokushima. And we’ll be in better condition for sure.”

gameface_one
05-31-2007, 09:22 AM
IN HUDDLE
New Seaba cage champs home


By Beth Celis
Inquirer
Last updated 05:01am (Mla time) 05/31/2007


MANILA, Philippines -- Aboard the PAL flight to Manila last Tuesday afternoon, national cager Mick Pennisi could already manage to smile.

Not a wide grin, but a smile nevertheless. Mick said the pain and swelling around his wisdom tooth which had tortured him for the last 12 days are almost gone. He promised to see a new dentist that one of his teammates recommended to arrange for an extraction.

The RP team continues its training journey on Independence Day to Europe where it will stay for a couple of weeks and then return to Manila. In July the Nationals leave again for Taipei to participate in the Jones Cup, in lieu of a tournament in Qatar late June which they cancelled.

Both right upper and lower wisdom teeth will have to go, according to the likeable and meek Mick.

While we were talking, Ranidel de Ocampo, who was seated beside him, was listening intently, as if there was something serious we were discussing. I asked Mick if he thought Ranidel -- the resident standup comedian and entertainer of the RP team -- was a good singer.

Mick said his teammate is a much better player than a singer, which is why he is recommending that he stick to basketball.

***

Also on board the PR 732 flight that afternoon was a huge, sterling silver cup which was hand-carried by one of the RP team’s staff. It was the trophy won by the Nationals in the Seaba men’s championship which served as their ticket to the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship in Tokushima, Japan, this July.

The trophy gleamed as light from the windows reflected on its smooth, shining surface.

The captain of the aircraft acknowledged two over-achieving sports groups in this flight: the RP-San Miguel cage team and the support group of the three Filipina mountaineers who successfully summited Mount Everest recently.

To show their appreciation, the captain and crew upgraded the seats of selected players from economy to business class. I’m not aware how the choice was made, but some like Kerby Raymundo, Enrico Villanueva, Tony de la Cruz, Ranidel and Mick were not too lucky because I saw them seated in the economy area. The quintet chorused, though, that they didn’t mind.

***

Because our team had so dominated the opposition, the games were all a question of how big our margin would be against each of them. Only the last match against the feisty Thais caused some anxious moments.

For sure though, the big assignment in Tokushima where we will be competing with 15 of the best teams in Asia will provide the big chill for pro-Pinoy spectators.

So too will the Southeast Asian Games in Thailand this December where an all-amateur team sponsored by sportsman Mikee Romero of Harbour Centre will represent the Philippines.

Although Harbour head coach Junel Baculi has yet to form the SEAG team practically from scratch, Junel is confident that we can regain the title.

Junel and chief scout Louie Alas were sent by Mikee to Ratchaburi to scout what could be the same cast which we will face in the SEAG.

Mikee also sent cameraman Albert Tirona to take footages of the games.

While in Bangkok on another mission, Welcoat team owner Terry Que and PBA governor Tony Chua, who succeeds Ricky Vargas as PBA chair next season, motored to Ratchaburi to watch the last game against Thailand and to show their support for the Nationals and fellow-governor Robert Non of San Miguel who is also the team manager of the RP squad.

The Seaba delegation held an impromptu pres conference upon arrival at the Centennial airport where television crews from various stations were waiting.

***

Despite the fatigue and heavy downpour that welcomed us in Manila, I made good my promise to San Beda Sea Lions team manager James Sy. From the airport, I headed straight for the Dragon Gate restaurant along Roxas Boulevard where a dinner and turnover ceremony were scheduled that night for his victorious and bemedalled swimmers that competed in the Hong Kong Mantas Invitationals recently.

The dozen or so medals were presented by the swim team -- a five-year champion in the NCAA -- to San Beda College president Reverend Fr. Mateo De Jesus, who was very pleased.

gameface_one
05-31-2007, 09:23 AM
RP five committee charts final push to Japan


By Francis Ochoa
Inquirer
Last updated 05:37am (Mla time) 05/31/2007


MANILA, Philippines -- The five-man RP team committee meets Thursday to plot the final changes to be implemented as the national squad approaches the tournament that mattered most: The FIBA-Asia men’s championship in Tokushima, Japan late July.

Among the changes that the meeting will tackle are reinforcements for the team roster and coaching staff, the addition of a team doctor and the realigning of the budget poured into the squad’s war chest.

“It’s going to be a free-flowing meeting where we will have to make sure that we enforce the changes needed to give us the best possible chance to book a ticket to the Olympics,” said PBA commissioner Noli Eala of the meeting that will be held at the Philippine Basketball Association office at lunch.

Eala, PBA chair Ricky Vargas, Red Bull team manager Tony Chua, RP-San Miguel team manager Robert Non and national coach Chot Reyes, who was scheduled to arrive from Thailand late Wednesday night, are the members of the committee.

Roster and coaching staff changes are expected to present a sticky problem to the committee, although Eala is confident the members can reach a compromise of sorts.

“They key is to strike a balance,” he stressed.

Eala will bat for the inclusion of Ginebra tactician Jong Uichico, Ateneo coach Norman Black and Alaska mentor Tim Cone -- all former national head coaches -- to the team, saying this was part of the original proposal when the national squad was formed.

“We will see what happened to that proposal and why none of those names are on the coaching staff,” Eala said. Reyes’ assistants currently are Nash Racela and Aboy Castro.

The committee will also discuss roster changes, something that even Reyes said was needed for the Japan joust, which will serve as the qualifying tournament for the Beijing Olympics.

Just after ruling the Southeast Asian Basketball Association men’s championship and booking a slot to Tokushima, Reyes said the RP roster wasn’t etched in stone and that he was seriously looking at Alaska’s Willie Miller, Sta. Lucia Realty’s Kelly Williams and Filipino-American Gabe Norwood, the 6-foot-4 starting point guard of George Mason U when it made a surprise run into the US NCAA Final Four two seasons ago.

“The problem is we made a gentleman’s agreement with the PBA teams that after we form the national team, we will no longer touch their lineups,” Eala said. “We have to talk with the teams again or see which players will be available at the end of June.”

Eala hopes the new team members can be fitted into the squad before the team leaves for Chinese Taipei to join the Jones Cup on July 2.

“By then, it will be close to the PBA finals so there will be a lot of players available for the national squad,” he explained.

Eala has also strongly vouched for a team doctor to be included in the RP-San Miguel squad to monitor foremost the diet of the Nationals. He said Red Bull has offered its doctor, John Lim, for free.

Budget will also be discussed with the committee hoping to fine-tune the alignment of funds.

“Our budget is not a bottomless pit,” said Eala. “We have to make sure that we spend our money wisely and not abuse the generosity of the likes of [main RP team bankrollers] Mr. [Danding] Cojuangco and Mr. [Manny V.] Pangilinan.”

Planned foreign trips will be put under scrutiny, partly for budget reasons and partly because some of those trips may be not as effective as others calendared in the Asian basketball scene. For one, a trip to a Qatar tournament was scrapped in favor of the Jones Cup.

“If there are items in the budget that we feel might not be needed, then maybe it’s time to scratch them off the list,” Eala explained.

Thursday’s meeting is important because it is expected to chart the national squad’s final approach to Tokushima, with guidelines and decisions reached there expected to be the blueprint for the country’s bid to make it to the Olympics.

“We’re cramming as it is,” Reyes had said earlier while in the Seaba tilt in Thailand, stressing the lack of time needed to whip up a competitive team that will battle the traditional Asian heavyweights for a ticket to Beijing.

The champion of the FIBA-Asia tilt gets a slot in the Olympics. If China wins the tournament, the second-placer also goes to Beijing because China is already seeded into the quadrennial meet as the host nation.

gameface_one
06-01-2007, 05:39 PM
Minor changes, Belgrade trip up


By NELSON BELTRAN

The Philippine Star

The Philippine team buildup for the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier is on track despite being hard-pressed for time as the team’s management committee gave coach Chot Reyes its full support, including training and tune-up tournament in Belgrade and tapping additional personnel.

The committee, which met Thursday following the Nationals’ sweep of the SEABA tourney that assured RP a berth for the Tokushima qualifier, approved Reyes’ plans to send the team to Belgrade and compete in the Jones Cup in Taipei as well as make minor changes on the team.

Fil-Am Kelly Williams and US collegiate product Gabe Norwood are being considered to replace Rico Villanueva and Tony Dela Cruz for the Belgrade training although it would be subject to approval by Sta. Lucia in the case of Williams and completion of travel documents on Norwood’s part.

Villanueva has joined San Miguel after a trade with Rommel Adducul while Dela Cruz will stay in Manila but will remain as a member of the team pool and will not be allowed to return to the Alaska fold.

Two other PBA standouts — Willie Miller and Marc Pingris, who’s about to be reactivated from the injury list by Purefoods – are also mentioned as among candidates for the FIBA-Asia championship in Tokushima, Japan two months from now.

PBA commissioner Noli Eala, a member of the management committee, said the RP team would go to Japan with all-out support from the committee.

"The committee is in full support of the RP team and its programs. We’re going to do everything to help the team prepare well for the Japan war," said Eala.

"The management has decided that if we go to war, we go armed to the teeth. If we lose, we lose doing our best," Eala added.

Red Bull has offered its team physician John Lim and Eala has suggested nutritionist Sanirose Orbeta to help the team which is now on the final stage of its preparation for a daunting task to gain berth in the Beijing Olympics next year.

Reyes has convinced the committee that their Belgrade training is necessary although their Qatar trip has been scrapped. Instead, the Nationals are booked for the Jones Cup (July 2-10) after their Belgrade jaunt (June 12-20).

"The committee was thinking conditioning and training may be done here but coach Chot justified the Belgrade trip. He said they’re to stay in a sports hotel with facilities not only for the game but also for conditioning. He said Belgrade will address concern on physical training," said Eala.

In between the Belgrade trip and the Jones Cup, the Nationals are to play the South Koreans possibly in a pair of exhibition matches here.

Then after the Jones Cup, the country is hosting a four-nation tourney with the RP team to be pitted against China, Syria and either Iran or Lebanon.

The other members of the committee are PBA chairman Ricky Vargas, vice chairman Tony Chua, San Miguel top official Robert Non and BAP-SBP executive director Patrick Gregorio.

On the suggestion to strengthen the composition of the coaching staff, Reyes said coaches Tim Cone, Jong Uichico, Binky Favis and Norman Black are still members of the team.

Cone, Uichico and Favis are to join the RP team training trips depending on their availability but they are expected to come in full force to be with Reyes in the Tokushima qualifier.

gameface_one
06-01-2007, 05:45 PM
2 Fil-Ams boost RP five pool


By Musong R. Castillo
Inquirer
Last updated 05:08am (Mla time) 06/01/2007


MANILA, Philippines -- In order to face up to -- and be at par with -- most foreign teams, the Philippine national basketball team is putting more international faces in its roster.

Coach Chot Reyes has added the names of Fil-Americans Gabe Norwood and Kelly Williams to the training pool roster as the Philippines hopes to make the Olympic circle again after being absent for more than two decades.

This was agreed Thursday as Reyes, officials of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and PBA commissioner Noli Eala discussed the RP team’s “expansion plans” in a meeting at the Edsa Shangri-La Hotel in Mandaluyong City.

At the same time, Reyes said he has ruled out a stint in the Qatar Invitationals this month. The team will instead play in the Jones Cup in Taipei and a tournament in Belgrade before plunging into FIBA-Asia action in Japan in July.

The joust in Tokushima, Japan, is the qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Games where one slot is left to be fought for by Asian teams since China has earned automatic entry for being the host.

No one was cut from the Philippine team, which finished fourth in the FIBA-Asia Champions Cup in Tehran, Iran, before running roughshod over the field in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) in Thailand recently.

Norwood, the former George Mason U standout in the NCAA, is a 6-foot-4 point guard.

Reyes said they will be awaiting Norwood’s citizenship papers so he could become eligible to play for the Philippines.

Williams, meanwhile, is leading all rookies in the statistical points race in the Philippine Basketball Association and is seen by many as a multidimensional player who can serve the RP team well on both ends.

However, he will have to get his release from mother ballclub Sta. Lucia Realty.

gameface_one
06-02-2007, 10:29 AM
Tokushima to cost P40 million


By JOAQUIN HENSON

The Philippine Star

A budget of close to P40 million will fuel the San Miguel Corp.-Philippine team’s bid to claim an Olympic ticket at the FIBA-Asia Championships in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5.

The amount represents what it will take to bring the squad to Tokushima ready for war and will be funded primarily by chief sponsor San Miguel Corp. with contributions from other entities, in particular the Philippine Long Distance Tel. Co.

Included in the total is a P4 million allocation for the trip to Belgrade where the team will play five Serbian professional clubs in eight days starting June 12. It also covers a P3.5 million outlay for the four-team Manila pocket tournament involving China, Syria, Lebanon or Iran and the Philippines on July 12-15.

Aside from the Belgrade and Manila invitationals, PBA commissioner Noli Eala said national coach Chot Reyes is looking forward to testing the competition in the Jones Cup in Taipei on July 2-10.

Eala said playing in the Jones Cup is a "better proposition" than participating in an invitational tournament in Qatar late this month.

"Chot initially wanted to play in Qatar but when the invitation came to play eight other national teams in the Jones Cup, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to scout Korea, Chinese-Taipei and Japan," said Eala. "We talked about our options when we were in Tehran. We were embarrassed to turn down Qatar but we felt they would understand our situation. We then confirmed our participation in the Jones Cup."

The team will pay to fly in and out of Taipei but the Jones Cup organizers are footing the bill for board and lodging. The Jones Cup organizers pleaded for the Philippines to accept the invitation, anticipating a large turnout from the Filipino community in Taipei. The Philippines has won three Jones Cup crowns so far. Ron Jacobs piloted Northern Cement to the 1981 title and San Miguel Corp. to the 1985 crown. Tim Cone coached the Centennial squad to the championship in 1998.

Ten teams are booked to play in the coming Jones Cup. Athletes In Action of the US heads the stellar cast that also lists the national quintets of Lebanon, Iran, Jordan, Qatar, Kazakhstan, Korea, Chinese-Taipei, Japan and the Philippines.

Eala said the Japanese national team is still being formed for Tokushima and will be represented by six pro league stars and six collegiate standouts in Taipei. The Japanese pool is made up of 22 candidates. As host of the Olympic qualifiers, Japan is pulling no stops in assembling a competitive squad.

Eala said the Belgrade series will toughen the national team for Tokushima.

"In Chot’s words, magpapabugbog tayo," continued Eala. "Coach thinks the Belgrade trip will get us ready for the Olympic qualifiers because the competition will typify the size and style we expect to face. It will give us the chance to get in better shape. The team will be billeted in a sports hotel with the facilities of a track oval, weight room and gym."

gameface_one
06-02-2007, 10:34 AM
Kelly gets go-signal to join nat’l team



Inquirer
Last updated 05:13am (Mla time) 06/02/2007


ANTIPOLO CITY, Philippines—Kelly Williams got the go-signal from mother club Sta. Lucia to play for the National team, but only after the Realtors have completed their participation in the on-going Fiesta Cup.

Sta. Lucia team manager Buddy Encarnado last night told scribes at the Ynares Center here that the team was willing to let go of Williams, subject to the condition set by the PBA board.

“I told the (PBA and Samahang Basketbol Pilipinas) that it is an honor and a privilege for us to have Kelly join the national team,” Encarnado said. “The PBA told us that they will not touch him as long as we still have games to play (in the Fiesta Cup).”

Williams was named as an additional member of the RP Five along with another Filipino-American, Gabe Norwood, by coach Chot Reyes on Thursday during a meeting with SBP bosses and PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

He was initially named to the RP pool two years ago and played for the Nationals in the Jones Cup in Taipei. Norwood is in the process of putting his citizenship papers in order. Musong R. Castillo

gameface_one
06-02-2007, 11:20 AM
Sports
Williams not keen on suiting up for Nationals?
Philippine Star

Saturday, June 2, 2007
Kelly Williams has been allowed by Sta. Lucia Realty to join the RP team but the Fil-Am forward appears undecided to be part of the national squad seeking a return stint to the Olympics in Beijing next year.

Sta. Lucia board representative Buddy Encarnado has approved the RP team management committee’s invitation for the ace Sta. Lucia rookie to re-join the Nationals but the ace Fil-Am remained uncommitted.

RP team coach Chot Reyes wanted to tap Williams and US collegiate product Gabe Norwood for their Belgrade jaunt on June 12-20 while also looking at Willie Miller and Marc Pingris as possible candidates for the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier in July.

But Williams appeared not too interested in joining the team, probably disappointed over his non-inclusion in the original lineup.

“I’m still thinking about it,” a Sta. Lucia insider quoted Williams as saying.

But Miller readily accepted the invitation to suit up for the Nationals.

“It’s a dream. Hopefully, I make it there,” said Miller. - Nelson Beltran

gameface_one
06-04-2007, 07:34 AM
RP 5 to get physical


By JOAQUIN HENSON
The Philippine Star

National coach Chot Reyes said the other day the Philippine team will rely on its ability to break down the defense, quickness in the backcourt, physical play and a knack for finding ways to score – which he called "diskarte" – in trying to capture an Olympic slot at the FIBA-Asia Championships in Tokushima on July 28-Aug. 5.

Reyes pointed to the Filipino cager’s commitment to flag and country as the chief motivator in the drive to return to the Olympics after 36 years.

In Tehran, the team was criticized for playing a style that hardly intimidated the opposition in defense. The lack of toughness was traced to the restrictive rules in the PBA where hand-checking and moving picks are illegal unlike in FIBA.

Reyes admitted the adjustments are major but pointed out that the players didn’t back down from physical play against the Gulf State teams.

"Some referees thought we were even too physical in Tehran," said Reyes. "Against Syria in the semifinals, we gave up 41 free throws and got only 15. In the playoff for third place, Qatar took 35 free throws compared to our 12. As for those defensive tricks that (Rogelio) Melencio and (Johnny) Revilla used to do, we’ll reserve them for Tokushima. We didn’t want to show all our cards in Tehran."

Adjusting to the international rules is a priority in the team’s training program which will jumpstart to the next level in Belgrade on June 12-20.

"We took a six-month rest because of our FIBA suspension and resumed practice only last March 12," said Reyes. "While we waited for the suspension to be lifted, our players went back to their mother teams and started playing PBA rules again. Now, we’re trying to delete those PBA habits. We know in Tokushima, hand-checking and using the arm-bar to defend the post will be allowed. Moving screens will also be tolerated so we’ve got a lot of adjusting to do."

Reyes said it’s a "different" game that’s played in FIBA – something that even the US has begun to realize after finishing poorly in the World Championships and Olympics.

What impressed Reyes about the players in Tehran and Ratchaburi was their team spirit.

"Off the court, I saw how cohesive they’ve become as a team," said Reyes. "They watch out for each other. When Mick (Pennisi) came down with a tooth problem, Danny (Seigle) and Asi (Taulava) went out of their way to take care of him. When Tony (de la Cruz) got hurt, the guys carried him around."

The other positive element that Reyes noted was the team’s ability to improvise on both ends.

"Somehow, the guys find ways to score and stop the other team from scoring," said Reyes. "That’s called ‘diskarte.’ In Tehran, we competed every game until we began to tire out playing against superior size in the semifinals – our eighth game in eight days. But we’re addressing that problem. We want to be the best conditioned team in Tokushima."

PBA commissioner Noli Eala said after the team plays in the Jones Cup on July 2-10, a pocket tournament is next on the agenda here July 12-15.

"The secretary-general of the CBA (Chinese Basketball Association) has confirmed the participation of the Chinese B team in the Manila invitationals," said Eala. "Syria will also play. If Iran insists on sending its B team, we’ll settle for Lebanon instead. The tournament will coincide with the PBA Finals and we’re thinking of scheduling tripleheaders to give fans a chance to watch six teams play in one day."

It’s not likely that China will field its A team in Tokushima because of the conflict in schedule with the Stankovic Cup in Beijing on July 28-Aug. 2. China is assured of a slot in the Beijing Olympics as the host country so playing in Tokushima is not necessary for qualification.

China’s B team is led by 6-7 Wang Bo who leads the CBA in assists.

Other stars in the squad are Bian Qiang, Yi Li and Zhang Kai. B standouts 6-8 Ding Jinghui, 6-7 Wang Lei and 6-4 Li Xiaoxui were recently promoted to the A team but may join the squad in Tokushima with NBA prospect Yi Jianliang.

gameface_one
06-06-2007, 09:42 AM
Norwood suiting up for Nationals


By NELSON BELTRAN

The Philippine Star

Fil-Am player Gabe Norwood has confirmed his participation with the SMC-RP team starting with its forth-coming training stint in Belgrade, Serbia and all the way to the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifying tourney in Tokushima, Japan in July.

RP team assistant coach Aboy Castro said Norwood will first attend the Utah Jazz tryout this week then either joins the RP team in a few practice sessions here or flies straight to Belgrade.

"The team is leaving for Belgrade Sunday or Monday. Norwood, meanwhile, is committed to join us on or before June 15," said Castro, the one in constant communication with the former George Mason U Patriot.

"Even if he makes the grade at Utah, he’s committed to play for us. Even the NBA stars are playing in the FIBA-America Olympic qualifier since the next NBA season won’t open until November," said Castro.

Norwood, at 6-foot-5, is said to be a versatile player able to play either guard position and at small forward.

He started in three contests and led the Patriots in bench scoring as they made the 2006 NCAA Final Four, losing to eventual champion the Florida Gators.

Norwood, 22, who’s maternal grandfather is a Filipino, suited up with the RP team in a game in their recent US training. The RP team is now working on Norwood’s Filipino passport which is the requirement for the FIBA-Asia championship.

The 22-year-old mascom graduate is keen on joining the Belgrade trip where the Nationals are set to play five Serbian league division I teams. They may encounter some members of the Serbian & Montenegro team which ruled the 2002 world championships.

The George Mason Patriots website says Norwood "is an intelligent athlete with an excellent feel for the game, distributes the ball well and has good court vision."

He had an outstanding two-year varsity career at State College Area High School for coach Drew Franks. He received Class AAAA 2003 most outstanding player and top offensive player honors in the Mountain League, named first-team All-League as a senior and second-team All-League as a junior.

His father Brian played four years of collegiate football for the University of Hawaii.

pachador
06-09-2007, 12:31 PM
Philippine team is playing in Belgrade capital of Serbia.

here is the site of the Serbian league :

http://nsl.kosarka.co.yu/default.aspx

ito yung mga photos ng teams nila:

http://nsl.kosarka.co.yu/Galeries.aspx

the serbians are a tall people. you can see from the pics na malalaki players nila....


i think the top serbian team is 'Partizan' . itong Partizan yata ang Ginebra team ng mga Sebians* :)* I hope the RP team gets to play them just for the "historical first" of it

gameface_one
06-09-2007, 02:20 PM
Execs confident RP 5 will hurdle odds

By NELSON BELTRAN
The Philippine Star

PBA top officials said the country’s tough draw in the FIBA-Asia championship could bring out the best from the Nationals in their drive for an Olympic berth in Tokushima, Japan next month.

“We’re concerned but remain optimistic. The draw didn’t determine our fate. In the end, it could become the tool leading our team to prepare hard for the battle,” said PBA commissioner Noli Eala.

“The Olympic berth is not won on the draw but on the playing court,” added Eala, confident the Nationals could make it past the Asian championship preliminary round where they’re bracketed with perennial champion China and formidable challengers Iran and Jordan.

“Our chance remains strong. We just have to try harder,” said PBA chairman Ricky Vargas.

The Nationals step up their buildup for the FIBA-Asia Olympic qualifier as they leave for an eight-day training stint in Belgrade, Serbia on Monday.

Coach Chot Reyes and his troops play five Serbian league division I ball clubs in their Belgrade stint which puts accent on the teams’ physical conditioning. Daily morning and afternoon workouts are part of their Belgrade training program.

After their Belgrade trip, the Nationals go to Chinese Taipei to compete in the Jones Cup also to be participated in by some teams entered in the Tokushima joust.

“It would be a good gauge how far our team has gone in its preparation,” said Eala.

Reyes has promised the Nationals “will go to Beijing or die trying.”

Assuming China is to win the championship, the Nationals need to finish no less than second to gain passage to the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Aside from the slots in the Olympics, the Tokushima tourney also offers two berths to the final qualifying event for the Beijing Games.

But the final Olympic qualifying competition will be cut-throat in terms of the quality of the field with European, South American and African teams seeing action. It’s a sort of wildcard tourney for tough teams which missed Olympic berth in their respective regional qualifiers.

So for the Philippines, it’s the Olympics through Tokushima or bust.

john_paul_manahan
06-09-2007, 06:09 PM
Partizan Belgrade...

gameface_one
06-11-2007, 01:36 PM
Baculi: RP needs tall shooters


The Philippine Star

To ensure the Philippines’ gold medal finish in the 24th Southeast Asian Games in December, RP team coach Junel Baculi said he would need tall players who can run and shoot the ball well.

"Ceiling, running and shooting – these are the important qualities we’ll need in the SEA Games," said Baculi, who steered the PBL-backed Nationals to the SEABA Champions Cup in Indonesia recently.

"If the aspirants have these attributes, they’re in," Baculi said.

Baculi was recently named coach, Harbour Centre mentor Jorge Gallent as consultant and Louie Alas of Letran College as his assistant. Harbour team owner Mikee Romero is the project director.

Baculi has in his pool a total of 48 players, mostly from the PBL and the collegiate ranks, but said those not in the list can still make it if they show they have what it takes to compete internationally.

The coaching staff, in fact, will scout some players in an invitational tournament slated late this month in Cebu where two clubs each from the National Capital Region, the Visayas and Mindanao are competing.

One player being eyed is 6-11 Fil-Am Gregory Slaughter from Cebu.

"I don’t know if you’ve heard of this guy, he’s a 6-11 Fil-Am and we’ve heard he’s good," said BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas executive director Patrick Gregorio.

"We’ll use that tournament as an opportunity to scout more players that we think will help the team," said Baculi, adding that the Filipinos must not underestimate the opposition since countries like Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia have improved a lot.

The pool will be trimmed to 30 by the end of this month before coming up with the final 12-man line-up in August. Joey Villar

gameface_one
06-11-2007, 01:40 PM
RP five off to Belgrade
mb.com.ph





AS THE hour of reckoning nears, San Miguel-Pilipinas leaves for Belgrade today for a week-long crash course on the European brand of basketball before turning its attention to the Jones Cup tournament in Taipei next month.



The 16-18 hour trip from Manila will take the Nationals to Hong Kong via Cathay Pacific at 8 p.m. before they board British Airways for the cross-continent flight to London and then Belgrade.

They will return on June 20, take a few days off, and plunge back into practice in preparation for the nineday William Jones Cup tournament starting July 2.

"This is all part of the preparation, our going up against bigger and stronger teams," said RP coach Chot Reyes.

"In our research we noticed that our Asian counterparts are training in Europe. In fact, by the time we reach Belgrade, Iran would’ve wrapped up their training there."

According to Reyes, the Jordan national team is in Turkey right now, Qatar is scrimmaging with tough teams in Slovenia before flying to Egypt, while Syria is in Greece.

"We’re scouting not only their players and their teams but also their preparation," Reyes said, referring to the Nationals’ would-be opponents in the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship in Tokushima, Japan set July 28-Aug. 5.

Among the five Division I Serbian teams that SMCRP will be facing in Belgrade is a squad from Novisad which features a 7foot import named Charles Chris and four locals standing 6-11, 6-10 and 69.

"It’s part of our toughening process, much the same of what we went through in the States," said Reyes. "Talagang magpapabugbog kami dito."

Meanwhile, despite missing a total of 13 games in the elimination phase of the Fiesta Cup, Barangay Ginebra’s do-it-all forward Rudy Hatfield emerged as the statistical average leader in the Most Valuable Player (MVP) race for the 2006-07 PBA season.

The 6-foot-3 Hatfield, who helped the Gin Kings win the Philippine Cup title, had an average of 34.8 SP for the season, 36.1 in the previous conference and 32.8 in the import-flavored Fiesta Cup, respectively.

Hatfield played 30 games in the Philippine Cup, and five in the Fiesta Cup for a total of 35 that qualified him for the MVP race, which requires a player to play 70 percent of the team’s total games.

However, statistics until the semifinal round will be included, which would adjust the ranking among the players in contention.

After playing five games, Hatfield left for the United States late March to attend to personal matters and he’s return remains uncertain.

Alaska Milk guard Willie Miller, who bagged the MVP award in 2003, is at second with 33.7 SP average.

He’s also the leading candidate for Best Player of the Conference honors.

Kelly Williams, the top rookie pick of Sta. Lucia Realty last year, is at close third with 32.1, followed by fellow freshman Arwind Santos of Air21 with 29.2, and his teammate Gary David with 28.9.

Last year’s MVP James Yap of Purefoods is at sixth place (28.4), Jay Washington of Talk ‘N Text at seventh (28.3), Ali Peek of Coca-Cola at eighth (26.9), former two-time MVP Danny Ildefonso of San Miguel at ninth (26.6) and Nic Belasco of Alaska at 10th (26.4).

Players loaned to the SMC-RP Team were not included in the MVP derby, including Philippine Cup Best Player of the Conference Mark Caguioa of Ginebra and Danny Seigle of San Miguel.

In an effort to reflect the player’s all-around value and improve on the selection of individual performance, the Commissioner’s Office has instituted several changes.

The top five players in statistics (average SP) at the end of the Final Four and the two best players of the conference winners (assuming they fail to make it to the top five) become automatic MVP candidates.

In case no player from the finalists of the two conferences makes the top five, the player who ranks highest from each team will also be included to the MVP race.

In the voting scheme, 30% will come from the media category, another 30% from the SP average, 25% from the players’ votes, 10% from ABC 5 and 5% from the Commissioner’s Office.

This will be the first time that the Commissioner’s Office will help in selecting the individual winners from MVP, BPC, Mythical Team, Rookie of the Year and the Best Import award.

Each of the voters will be asked for their top three choices, which carries an equivalent value of 60 points for first place, 30 for second and 10 for third.

pachador
06-12-2007, 12:32 AM
The latest news says that Kelly williams might not join the RP team . You can send a message to kelly williams persuading him to change his mind. alam mo naman , bata pa yan at merong tampo-tampo siguro. if your a true RP team fanatic, then it does not harm to try sendinh kelly williams a message. just dont quarrel him as that would be counter-productive. use persuasion and positive message. here is his website. you need to be a free myspace member:

http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=154092662

Bennie Bangag
06-12-2007, 05:14 AM
sa totoo lang, gusto ni kelly mag-national team. yan ang tunay na dahilan kung bakit pumunta ng pilipinas yan. problema lang ay ayaw syang payagan ni sta lucia team manager buddy encarnado. wala pong kinalaman ang tampo-tampo. baka kasi kasuhan din sya ng insubordination gaya ni rico villanueva. if you will recall, the root of rico's alleged insubordination is his insistence to attend the weekly practices of the national team despite red bull management's direct order for him to instead focus on the ball club's playoff push, reasoning that they already lent mick pennisi to the national cause.

jembengzon
06-12-2007, 06:10 AM
ok lang ma-charge ng insubordination at ma-trade out of sta. lucia naman, diba ? ;D