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amdgc82
03-10-2008, 06:44 AM
PBA Legends Tour reminisces glory days, rivalries for a cause (http://www.manilatimes.net/national/2008/mar/03/yehey/sports/20080303spo2.html)
Monday, March 03, 2008
By Eddie G. Alinea, Contributor
www.manilatimes.net

The historic Crispa-Toyota rivalry in the Philippine Basketball Association during its first decade of existence will be revived during the “Grand Reunion Tour of Philippine Basketball Greats” scheduled next month in four key cities in California.

This is because players from the Redmanizers and the Super Corollas, who squared off in many classic battles for supremacy in the first professional league in the country and in Asia for that matter, form the core of the two teams that will be playing on March 9 at the Pavilion Gym in Union City; March 9 at the Arco Arena, home of the Kings, in Sacramento; March 15 at the CAL State Dominguez Hills in Carson City and March 16 at the Peterson Gym in San Diego.

They are Redmanizers Atoy Co, Philip Cezar, Bogs Adornado, Abet Guidaben, Bernie Fabiosa, Yoyoy Villamin and Danny Florencio and Corollas Sonny Jaworski, Ramon Fernandez, Francis Arnaiz, Abe King, Estoy Estrada, Big Boy Reynoso, Tim Coloso and Roberto Concepcion.* *

Latter-day heroes Alvin Patrimonio, Allan Caidic, Hector Calma, Vergel Meneses, Johnny Abarrientos, Jojo Lastimosa, Jerry Codinera, Bong Alvarez, Ronnie Magsanoc, Dindo Pumaren and Art de la Cruz will be reinforcing the two teams, according to Ruffy Ignacio, secretary-treasurer of the organizing PBA Legends USA Foundation in an online interview with The Manila Times.

Other players seeing action are Manila-based Manny Paner, Gerry Esplana, Manny Victorino and Sonny Cabatu, US-based Ricardo Brown, Rudolf Kutch, Joy Cleofas, Onchie de la Cruz, Yves Dignadice, Marte Saldana, Rino Salazar, Noni Robles, Cris Bade, Bokyo Lau*chengco, Etok Lobo, Dennis Abbatuan, Allan de los Reyes, Elmer Lago, Jun Jabar, Oni Padilla, Jun Paguinto, Django Rivera, Peter Aguilar, Romy de la Rosa, Naning Valenciano, Boy Valera, Anthony Dasalla, Rey Yncierto, Jose Francisco and Danny Basilan.

An idea of PBA Legends USA Foundation Chairman (Abe) King, known as the “Chairman of the Board” during his competitive days, the Grand Reunion Tour is made possible with the support of San Miguel Corp., Martin Purefoods, Accel, Ohana Harbor Coffee, Philippine News, LBC, Weekend Balita and Island Pacific Supermarket.

The project is an initial attempt to express the players’ concern not only of Philippine basketball, but, likewise of the Filipinos back home. Its proceeds are intended for scholarship grants to poor and deserving students in the country, medical and dental missions, low-cost housing through Gawad Kalinga, basketball clinics in depressed urban areas and the like.

The Tour, said Ignacio, is a celebration of the wonderful times the players spent together while playing as teammates and as opponents from their amateur days until the professional years.

“That is why we at the PBA Legends USA Foundation, from Abe [King] to members of the board, among them, Rino [Salazar], Marte [Saldana] and Noni [Robles] are very thankful to the players for their positive response in our call to support the project,” Ignacio said.

“As in the words of Francis [Arnaiz], this is one way for us to bring back what Philippine basketball has done for us to be what we are now, he added.

amdgc82
03-10-2008, 06:49 AM
BUZZER BEATER: Ang Pagbabalik: PBA Legends Tour (http://www.abante.com.ph/issue/mar1008/sports_tm.htm)
by TJ Manotoc*
www.abante.com.ph

Una akong naging masugid na PBA fan noong ako’y 11 years old. Naalala ko pa ‘yun, 1989. Unang taon ‘yun ng pagpasok ng Purefoods sa liga. Hindi ko alam kung bakit pero parang instant at bigla akong naging big fan ng PBA at ng Purefoods. Pinaka-idol ko pa nun si Jolas. Tuwang-tuwa ako sa lakas ng kanyang talon at sa kakaibang tira niya na para bang deroscas.

Mga kasamahan pa niya nun sina Jerry Codiñera, Alvin Patrimonio, Dindo Pumaren, at naging playing coach pa nila si “El Presidente” Ramon Fernandez.

Enjoy na enjoy ako nun sa pagiging PBA fan tulad ng halos lahat sa atin noong ating kabataan. At kung iisipin ko pang maigi ang mga una kong PBA experience ay noon pang 1979. Fan ako nun ng Utex Wranglers. At kahit 2 years old lang ako noon, naalala ko ang dahilan, dahil sa coach ng Utex noon ay ang idol kong si Tommy Manotoc. Opo, ang tatay ko ang dahilan sa aking pagi*ging maagang PBA fan kahit hindi ko pa naiintindihan ang basketball. Naalala ko pang nanood ako ng game na may suot akong helmet at may dala kaming payong, la*ging handa para sa batuhan ng piso at kung anu-ano pa.

Lahat tayo ay may mga magagandang alaala bilang mga PBA fans ng mga idolo nating noong mga panahon natin.

Nitong nakalipas na Sabado, nagbalik ang ating mga idolo sa hardcourt. Sa kauna-unahang pagkakataon, nagsimula na ang PBA Legends Tour. Sa Amerika ito nag-iikot ngayon dala ng pagsisikap ng original King of da Boards na si Abe King.

Nakita ko si Abe noong October last year nung unang bisita niya para manghikayat ng mga dati niyang kasamahan sa PBA para sumali sa PBA Legends Tour. Ilang taon na rin ang nakalipas na hindi nakabalik si Abe sa Pilipinas mula ng siya’y nag-migrate sa Amerika at ngayo’y naka-based na siya sa Seattle, Washington.

Pero ang pinaka-nagustuhan ko sa PBA Legends Tour na ito ay ang kanilang kakaibang pakay -- na makatulong sa mga dati nilang kasamahan na `di pinalad na tulad ng mga superstar at ngayo’y naghihirap na. Mga dating player na nasanay sa mga hiyaw at saya na dala ng spotlight ng pagiging isang PBA player, at ngayo’y naghihirap at nagsisikap para lang mabigyan ng maayos na pamumuhay ang pamilya at edukasyon sa kanilang mga anak.

Isa na dito si Nani Demegilio na ngayon ay nagtatrabaho sa Security Group ni Mr. Robles ng Sta. Lucia Realty, ang huling team na nilaruan ni Nani bago siya magretiro. Nabisita ko si Nani sa kanyang bahay malapit sa Sta. Lucia Grand Mall. Umuupa siya sa isang maliit na kuwarto kasama ang kanyang misis at anak. Mabait si Nani, masipag na player noong panahon niya, at mapalad siyang may mga malalaking puso para sa kanyang kapwa player tulad ni Abe King.

Laking tuwa ni Nani nang malaman niya na ang balak gawin ng grupo nila Abe ay makatulong sa paghihirap tulad ng dinadaanan niya ngayon. Na mabigyan man lang ng scholarships ang kanilang mga anak at matulungang maiangat muli ang kanilang antas sa buhay.

Para kay Abe, matagal na niyang gustong magawa ito, at natutuwa siyang napa-oo niya ang marami niyang mga dating kasamahan, kakampi man o kalaban. Ilan lang sa mga malalaking pangalan na sumama sa maganda niyang proyekto ay sina Alvin Patrimonio, Allan Caidic at si Ronnie Magsanoc. At kung may mga mas “Legend” pa sa mga ‘yun ay napasama din niya sina Francis Arnaiz, Philip Cesar, Ramon Fernandez, Bernie Fabiosa, at si ‘Big J’ Sonny Jaworski.

Napakagandang treat na ito para sa mga PBA fans sa Amerika na mapanood ang mga laro ng mga ito, at may special one one-on-one challenges pa nina Philip Cesar vs Ramon Fernandez at Bernie Fabiosa vs Francis Arnaiz.

Pero ang tunay na magi-enjoy sa masayang reunion ng mga PBA Legends ay ang mismong mga dating player na kahit hindi man makakapanood kahit isang segundo lang ng mga laro nila, mabibigyan naman nila ng malaking tulong para mabigyan ng “reinforcement” kumbaga para lumaban sa kahirapan ng buhay.

Mabuhay kayo PBA Legends at ipagpatuloy niyo ang napakangada ninyong hangarin!

amdgc82
03-12-2008, 07:40 PM
PBA Legends Tour - A smash hit (http://www.hometeamsonline.com/teams/default.asp?u=PBALEGENDS&t=c&s=basketball&p=newsstory&newsID=3149)
Ed Tayag - 3/11/2008

The PBA Legends Grand Reunion Tour and Dream Series was a smash hit among Filipino fans in Northern California over the weekend. Hundreds of fans had to be turned away from the Union City venue because of fire code regulations. Organizers are expecting a heavier fan turnout in LA and San Diego.

Fans were clapping, stomping their feet and cheering at the top of their voices at the mere sight of their basketball idols. Every dribble, pass and shot was met with unbelievable ogle, unending screams and high passion. It was drama all over for the PBA Legends superstars.* *

The highlight of the event was the nostalgic Crispa versus Toyota dream match.* It was Ramon Fernandez against Abet Guidaben, Abe King versus Philip Cezar, Francis Arnaiz manning Bernie Fabiosa, Atoy Co against Tim Coloso, Bogs Adornado facing Bong Alvarez* who replaced the Living* Legend, Senator Robert Jaworski who cannot play because of an injury to his shoulder. Jaworski coached the Ohana Harbor Coffee team while Cris Calilan coached the Martin Purefoods team.*

It was an Araneta Coliseum and ULTRA atmosphere combined. Every time Fernandez held the ball, fans screamed. When Atoy Co shot the* ball from 3-point country, fans held their breath. “Cezar”, “Abe”, “Guidaben”, they yelled.

Easy fan favorites among the younger legends were “the face”, “the captain” , four-time MVP Alvin Patrimonio, “aerial voyager” Vergel Meneses, “triggerman” Allan Caidic, Olsen Racela, “point laureate” Ronnie Magsanoc, Jojo Lastimosa (Jolas, legs) Jerry Codinera (defense minister), Gerry Esplana, “the director” Hector Calma and indefatigable Sonny Cabatu.

In Union City, Ohana Harbor Coffee beat Martin Purefoods. The next day, Martin Purefoods won against Ohana Harbor Coffee at the ARCO Arena in Sacramento.

In the one-on-one battles, Bernie Fabiosa edged Francis Arnaiz in Union City but Arnaiz turn the tables on Fabiosa in Sacramento. Don Ramon Fernandez* beat Prince Philip Cezar, Cezar outgunned Chairman of the Boards Abe King but King beat Fernandez in Union City. Fernandex outclassed King in Sacramento. “Hindi pa tapos ang laban,” Abe King told Fernandez. “See you in LA and San Diego, Abe and Philip,” the franchise, Ramon Fernandez remarked.

In the 3-point shoot out contest in Northern California, no basketball fan could beat the Triggerman Allan Caidic. “There will still be a 3 point shootout contest in LA and San Diego,” organizer Roland Abilo said. “We will limit it to 20 contestants. This time, fans will challenge Ronnie Magsanoc, “he added.

Delirious fans spilled over to the hardcourt to pose for souvenir pictures and get the autographs of their idols. The Big J, Robert Jaworski* was mobbed by fans while they chanted “Ja-wor-ski”. The fans had to be led back to their seats so that* the basketball game will continue. Those in attendance were touched by the former senator’s inspirational speech. Most of them heard him* publicly speak for the first time. “He is better than most politicians. He cares for the people. We need someone like JAWO in public service,” Roger Sarmiento, a Fil-Am from Tarlac emphasized.

“Bogs Adornado is so good-looking” and Abet Guidaben is co cute said an avid Crispanatic. “Ay, tumaba si Abe King”, Toyota fan Lenlen Umali stated. “I love you Alvin”, shouted one young lady fan while somebody yelled “Marry me, Sonny Cabatu”.

Bong Alvarez and Vergel Meneses showed fans that they can still slam dunk the basketball. Atoy Co and Bogs Adornado can still give the young ones a run for their money with their accuracy shooting the ball.

Former PBA players Dindo Pumaren (the bullet), Yves Dignadice (kilabot ng mga kolehiyala), Yoyoy Villamin (Bicolano superman), Onchie dela Cruz (enforcer), Art dela Cruz, Romy dela Rosa, Naning Valenciano, Django Rivera, Elmer Lago, Dwight Lago, Boyet Francisco, Boy Valera, Cris Bade, Jun Jabar, Allan delos Reyes, Oni Padilla, Jun Paguinto, and Peter Aguilar will play in the exhibition games in LA and San Diego.

Ricardo Brown, Estoy Estrada, Rino Salazar, Marte Saldana, Bokyo Lauchengco, Anthony Dasalla , Etok Lobo,* Noni Robles, Alex Marquez, Ramon Dizon,* and Tony Torrente have also confirmed their attendance.*

On Saturday, March 15, the PBA Legends Grand Tour will be at the Cal State University - Dominguez Hills Gym in Carson. On March 16, Sunday, they will be at the San Diego State University-Petersen Gym in San Diego. Gates will open at 10:30 am in both venues. Tickets are pegged at $20 and $40.* Kababayan LA Channel 18 hosted by Janelle So will have Alvin Patrimonio and Jojo Lastimosa as guests on March 11, Atoy Co, Philip Cezar, Ramon Fernandez and Tim Coloso on March 12, Ronnie Magsanoc, Hector Calma, Dindo Pumaren and Olsen Racela on March 13 and Bogs Adornado, Bong Alvarez and Jerry Codinera on March 14.* The above-named PBA players will have their personal appearances at the Island Pacific Supermarkets at 5 pm on March 11 (Los Angeles), March 12 (Van Nuys) and March 13 (West Covina).Proceeds of the events will benefit the many civic projects of the PBA Legends, Inc. and former basketball players in dire need of assistance.

Major sponsors are Martin Purefoods, Ohana Harbor Coffee, San Miguel Corporation, Balita and Philippine News.

Fans can take pictures of their idols and ask for their autographs.

For more information, please call Roland (Los Angeles) at 714-398-7171 and, April dela Rosa (San Diego) at 858-637-6464. You may also visit the website at www.pbalegendsusa.com for more details

amdgc82
03-13-2008, 06:44 AM
In Huddle: A camaraderie unseen in today’s PBA (http://sports.inquirer.net/inquirersports/inquirersports/view/20080313-124402/A-camaraderie-unseen-in-todays-PBA)
By Beth Celis
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 03:01:00 03/13/2008

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA—I first noticed the chinky-eyed fellow at the San Francisco airport. He was with Abe King, chair of the PBA Legends Foundation USA, and the other Filipinos who were there to welcome the legends arriving from Manila.

He must be a big fan of the PBA, I thought to myself. The fellow greeted all the players, as if they were old-time friends.

Marte Saldaña, who has been based in Frisco for 17 years and now works for LBC, was also there to welcome his former colleagues. Now 49, Marte sported a different hairdo, that’s why I did not recognize him. He had to introduce himself to me.

Except for Samboy Lim and Johnny Abarrientos, the cast from Manila was complete. Samboy had to go under the knife some weeks before departure while Johnny had to attend to a business emergency involving a pyramid scam. The news here in California is that many PBA cagers who invested in the enterprise lost a considerable amount of money.

* * *

I felt better when I learned during dinner at Gerry’s Grill, Union City branch, that it wasn’t only me who had failed to recognize the chinky-eyed fellow—former PBA cager Bokyo Lauchengco, who is now 52. Even his colleagues Hector Calma and Bong Alvarez, who even spoke to him, did not recognize him.

“Have I really changed that much?” Bokyo couldn’t help but ask as we took in the chilly, piney air outside the restaurant.

At least, I immediately recognized Anthony Dasalla, also 52, even if he had been gone from the Philippines for 21 years. In contrast, Bokyo left the country only three years ago.

Anthony works with United Airlines.

* * *

After feasting on a wild combination of Filipino food that included pancit molo, pancit bihon, pancit malabon, bulalo, pork and chicken adobo, fried lumpia, grilled chicken, grilled pork liempo, pakbet, chopsuey and sisig, the Legends prepared to return to the Crowne Royale Hotel where they are billeted.

“I remember when I was here with the national team in l974, after participating in the World championships in Puerto Rico,” Manny Paner waxed nostalgic. “Converse shoes were in vogue then and my teammate Yoyong Martirez bought 10 pairs in assorted colors. When he got home and had time to scrutinize the labels, they all read “Made in Marikina.”

Bogs Adornado, Yoyong’s teammate in the 1972 Munich Olympics, also had an anecdote about Yoyong.

“Athletic shoes were on sale at the Olympic Village and Yoyong just had to buy a pair,” said Bogs. “He didn’t believe us when we told him that what he was buying were wrestler’s shoes.”

Incidentally, there are three Olympians on the PBA Legends Grand Reunion Tour: Robert “Sonny” Jaworski (’68 Mexico Olympics), Adornado and Paner (’72 Munich)

* * *

Paner, who became the object of controversy in the ’70s when his PBA salary soared to P8,000—the highest then, was shocked to hear reports that he had been seen sleeping on the pavement in Cebu because he was dead drunk.

“Where could all that malicious talk have come from? I have been working with the Bureau of Immigration in Manila as a special agent for five years now,” said Manny who had been christened Antonio Banderas by Atoy Co because of his hairdo.

“Antonio Banderas” declined to comment when I asked him to confirm reports that he is now estranged from his movie actress wife Daisy Romualdez.

* * *

Saturday morning, the US-based ex-PBA cagers started arriving from Los Angeles and from the East Coast: Abet Guidaben, Bernie Fabiosa, Yoyoy Villamin, Onchie dela Cruz, Tim Coloso, Cris Bade, Noni Robles, Etok Lobo, Yves Dignadice, Elmer Lago, Jun Jabar, Django Rivera, Romy de la Rosa, Rey Yncierto, Jerome Cueto, Boyet Francisco and, last but not least, the Living Legend himself Sonny Jaworski, who was accompanied by his wife Evelyn and children.

The Jaworskis flew in from Los Angeles, where Sonny was bestowed a special award by Shell, if I’m not mistaken.

Frankly, I have never seen the cagers so excited to see each other. Abe successfully blended three generations of PBA cagers—from the Big J to Alvin Patrimonio to Olsen Racela, who is still active and felt out of place on the tour.

amdgc82
03-14-2008, 06:25 AM
Laykdatan: PBA Legends dinumog sa US (http://www.abante-tonite.com/issue/mar1408/sports_layk.htm)
Zaldy Perez
www.abante-tonite.com

Noon pang nakaraang Sabado nagsimula ang PBA Legends US tour sa San Francisco, California at sumusumpa ang nagbalita sa Laykdatan na hit na hit ang nasabing exhibition games series sa mga Pinoy doon sa USA.

Ang nasabing game series ng mga retirado nang PBA players ay pinagsumikapang itulak ng president ng PBA Le*gends Foundation-USA na si Abe King.

Ayon sa aking kaibigan na naroon, maging si Abe ay nagulat dahil halos lahat ng mga da*ting PBA players sa west at east coast ay dumating sa San Francisco, puwera pa ang nakabase siyempre dito sa Pilipinas sa pangu*nguna ni former senator Sonny Jaworski.

Ang unang laro ay ginanap sa Union City malapit lamang sa San Francisco area, sinundan kaagad ito kinabukasan (Sunday) sa Sacramento sa Arco Arena na pinagdarausan ng NBA games.

Sa Sacramento, gulat na gulat ang PBA Le*gends dahil dinumog sila ng husto doon ng mga kababa*yang Pilipino.

Maging si Eugene Tejada, ang PBA player na muntik nang malumpo doon sa Ynares Gym, ay dumating din kasama ang kanyang ama.

Malaki na ang in-improve ni Eugene dahil nakakalakad na siya, kaya lang ay may crutches.

Itong darating na weekend, makikita ang PBA Legends sa Carson City malapit lamang sa Los Angeles kung saan ina*asahan din ang sell out crowd dahil marami ring Pilipino ang naninirahan doon.

Matatapos ang US tour ng PBA Legends sa araw ng Linggo sa San Diego City.

By the way, during their stay in San Francisco, tumayong host doon si Dr. Christian Bocobo, ang publisher ng hit na Le*gends and Heroes of Phi*lippine Basketball.

Nag-donate rin si Bocobo ng 100 copies ng nasabing libro na maaa*ring ipagbili at ang proceeds ay mapupunta sa PBA Legends Foundation-USA.

Layunin ng nasabing US tour ng PBA Legends na maka-raise ng pondo na ipangtutulong hindi lamang sa mga hindi sinu*werteng PBA pla*yers, kundi sa mga taong na*ngangailangan dito sa Pilipinas.

Para sa Laykdatan, marahil dapat na papurihan si Abe dahil sa napaka-noble na layunin niya sa pagbuo ng PBA Le*gends Foundation.

Dahil kay Abe, nangyari ang imposible -- napagsama-sama niya ang mga PBA players na matapos ang kanilang pla*ying career ay naghanap ng ibang suwerte sa US. Pinag-isa rin sila ni Abe para sa makataong layunin.

Bukod pa dito ang pag-promote sa PBA league na nagbigay sa kanila ng katanyagan at maluwag na pamumuhay, gayundin ang bigyang-kasiyahan ang mga naho-homesick na*ting kababayan sa United States. Abe keep up the good work! Saludo ang Laykdatan sa ‘yo.

gameface_one
03-15-2008, 01:58 PM
In Huddle
A camaraderie unseen in today’s PBA


By Beth Celis
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 03:01:00 03/13/2008


SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA—I first noticed the chinky-eyed fellow at the San Francisco airport. He was with Abe King, chair of the PBA Legends Foundation USA, and the other Filipinos who were there to welcome the legends arriving from Manila.

He must be a big fan of the PBA, I thought to myself. The fellow greeted all the players, as if they were old-time friends.

Marte Saldaña, who has been based in Frisco for 17 years and now works for LBC, was also there to welcome his former colleagues. Now 49, Marte sported a different hairdo, that’s why I did not recognize him. He had to introduce himself to me.

Except for Samboy Lim and Johnny Abarrientos, the cast from Manila was complete. Samboy had to go under the knife some weeks before departure while Johnny had to attend to a business emergency involving a pyramid scam. The news here in California is that many PBA cagers who invested in the enterprise lost a considerable amount of money.

* * *

I felt better when I learned during dinner at Gerry’s Grill, Union City branch, that it wasn’t only me who had failed to recognize the chinky-eyed fellow—former PBA cager Bokyo Lauchengco, who is now 52. Even his colleagues Hector Calma and Bong Alvarez, who even spoke to him, did not recognize him.

“Have I really changed that much?” Bokyo couldn’t help but ask as we took in the chilly, piney air outside the restaurant.

At least, I immediately recognized Anthony Dasalla, also 52, even if he had been gone from the Philippines for 21 years. In contrast, Bokyo left the country only three years ago.

Anthony works with United Airlines.

* * *

After feasting on a wild combination of Filipino food that included pancit molo, pancit bihon, pancit malabon, bulalo, pork and chicken adobo, fried lumpia, grilled chicken, grilled pork liempo, pakbet, chopsuey and sisig, the Legends prepared to return to the Crowne Royale Hotel where they are billeted.

“I remember when I was here with the national team in l974, after participating in the World championships in Puerto Rico,” Manny Paner waxed nostalgic. “Converse shoes were in vogue then and my teammate Yoyong Martirez bought 10 pairs in assorted colors. When he got home and had time to scrutinize the labels, they all read “Made in Marikina.”

Bogs Adornado, Yoyong’s teammate in the 1972 Munich Olympics, also had an anecdote about Yoyong.

“Athletic shoes were on sale at the Olympic Village and Yoyong just had to buy a pair,” said Bogs. “He didn’t believe us when we told him that what he was buying were wrestler’s shoes.”

Incidentally, there are three Olympians on the PBA Legends Grand Reunion Tour: Robert “Sonny” Jaworski (’68 Mexico Olympics), Adornado and Paner (’72 Munich)

* * *

Paner, who became the object of controversy in the ’70s when his PBA salary soared to P8,000—the highest then, was shocked to hear reports that he had been seen sleeping on the pavement in Cebu because he was dead drunk.

“Where could all that malicious talk have come from? I have been working with the Bureau of Immigration in Manila as a special agent for five years now,” said Manny who had been christened Antonio Banderas by Atoy Co because of his hairdo.

“Antonio Banderas” declined to comment when I asked him to confirm reports that he is now estranged from his movie actress wife Daisy Romualdez.

* * *

Saturday morning, the US-based ex-PBA cagers started arriving from Los Angeles and from the East Coast: Abet Guidaben, Bernie Fabiosa, Yoyoy Villamin, Onchie dela Cruz, Tim Coloso, Cris Bade, Noni Robles, Etok Lobo, Yves Dignadice, Elmer Lago, Jun Jabar, Django Rivera, Romy de la Rosa, Rey Yncierto, Jerome Cueto, Boyet Francisco and, last but not least, the Living Legend himself Sonny Jaworski, who was accompanied by his wife Evelyn and children.

The Jaworskis flew in from Los Angeles, where Sonny was bestowed a special award by Shell, if I’m not mistaken.

Frankly, I have never seen the cagers so excited to see each other. Abe successfully blended three generations of PBA cagers—from the Big J to Alvin Patrimonio to Olsen Racela, who is still active and felt out of place on the tour.

gameface_one
03-17-2008, 09:52 PM
PBA Legends draw full house


By Beth Celis
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 04:49:00 03/17/2008


CALIFORNIA—Anyone who needs proof of the success of the PBA Legends Grand Reunion tour here can find it in the Union City arena. There, people actually had to be turned away from the venue.

And it wasn’t simply because tickets run out. They had to be turned away because if organizers allowed them to get in, they would be committing a fire code violation.

The dream series was a smash hit among Filipino fans in Northern California and even if organizers followed fire code requirements to the last letter, action was steaming hot, leading the people behind the event to believe that stops in LA and San Diego will be just as fruitful.

A bunch of retired Philippine Basketball Association stars are touring American cities, renewing rivalries and playing exhibition matches to raise funds for ex-professional ball players.

Fans enjoyed the throwback treat, particularly since a bulk of the players represented the old rivalry between fabled squads Crispa and Toyota.

Ramon Fernandez battled against Abet Guidaben, Abe King took on Philip Cezar, Francis Arnaiz challenged Bernie Fabiosa, Atoy Co tested Tim Coloso and Bogs Adornado faced Bong Alvarez, who replaced the Living Legend, former Senator Robert Jaworski, who could not play because of a shoulder injury.

The players were divided into two squads. Jaworski coached the Ohana Harbor Coffee team while Cris Calilan coached the Martin Purefoods team.

Fans of the younger generation of retirees also had a reason to cheer: Among those present were four-time MVP Alvin Patrimonio, Vergel Meneses, Allan Caidic, Ronnie Magsanoc, Jojo Lastimosa, Jerry Codiñera and Hector Calma.

There was also an interactive three-point shootout where fans lined up to try their luck against a PBA Legend. In Sacramento, none of the fans who tried their luck against Caidic won.

But the highlight of the events was the chance for fans to mingle and pose with, and get autographs from, their long-time idols.

Jaworski was mobbed by fans who had to be ushered back to their seats so that the games could start.

Major sponsors are Martin Purefoods, Ohana Harbor Coffee, San Miguel Corporation, Balita and Philippine News.

AnthonyServinio
03-18-2008, 12:58 AM
* * *ANY PBA reunion game is not complete without former Seven-Up Uncola forward turned TV/movie comedian Jaime "Jimmy Saints" Santos!* *:D

* * *I cannot forget how Santos, a benchwarmer during his playing days, by his lonesome stole the limelight from his superstar contemporaries via a slew of comic antics when the PBA held a reunion in honor of the league's 20th Anniversary.* As a rule, only players from the pioneer batch of 1975 were allowed to join.

* * *Atoy Co was playing super until he got thrown out for excessive complaining.* Hence the game MVP award went to Johnny Revilla.* Santos should have been given an honorable mention!

Also, the main all-star game for the current players suffered as it failed to be at least half as entertaining as the Legends' curtain-raiser.

amdgc82
03-18-2008, 06:44 AM
Hoopla from Manila, Grand Reunion of PBA Greats (http://www.hometeamsonline.com/teams/default.asp?u=PBALEGENDS&t=c&s=basketball&p=newsstory&newsID=3174)
by John Lacson and Admin - 3/17/2008

March 15 2008. Cal State Dominguez is a sprawling university in Dominguez Hills, Carson city, Southern California. Right off the 91 freeway and relatively close to the Pacific ocean, the gymnasium in this school was the site for the 1st Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Grand Reunion tour in the USA.

The PBA Legends USA Foundation is the brain child of Abe King Jr(CEO), backed up by powerful help from Rey Santos (VP), Rufino Ignacio (Secty/Treas) and other fellow cagers like Senator Bobby Jaworski. These men of vision saw the potential of uniting the global Filipino and helping the less fortunate thru their passion which is basketball. The main objective of this unity is to raise funds for educational needs via scholarships, donate computers, provide medical/dental missions for the less fortunate Filipinos in the homeland. Another goal would be to assist the hard up PBA players (past and present) who have fallen to hard times.

Abe King Jr is a big man with a giant heart. He currently stays in the USA and reminisces about the times when newly arrived from the Philippines, he worked late shifts at a convenience store so he could support the family. Kind of like all of us willing to take on any job in America just to get started. His positivity migrates to people around him making him the hub of a fun group.

Definitely, this PBA presentation intends to entertain Filipino Americans who remember the good old days, being glued to that TV set watching the games. Times when you cheered your favorite PBA heroes to make that 3point shot to even the game or drive in with that basketball to lay the winning shot. Although life was hard in the old country, those PBA games made it easier to tolerate. Something to look forward to.

Time flew by and your PBA heroes retired and moved on to different lives. Some became celebrities, politicians, and businessmen. Some just dropped out not to be heard of again until now. Others immigrated to other countries like America.

This is a list of PBA Legend players and where they are currently based:

RP-BASED PLAYERS: Ramon Fernandez, Philip Cezar, Atoy Co, Bogs Adornado, Manny Paner, Manny Victorino, Hector Calma, Alvin Patrimonio, Allan Caidic, Jojo Lastimosa, Ronnie Magsanoc, Gerry Esplana, Bong Alvarez, Vergel Meneses, Dindo Umaren, Johnny Abarrientos, Olsen Racela, Jerry Codinera, Art DeLa Cruz, Sonny Cabatu

U.S. BASED PLAYERS: Francis Arnaiz, Abe King Jr., Abet Guidaben, Bernie Fabiosa, Estoy Estrada, Yoyoy Villamin, Big Boy Reynoso, Rudolf Kutch, Marte Saldana, Ricardo Brown, Onchie DeLa Cruz, Tim Coloso, Cris Bade, Dennis Abbatuan, Noni Robles, Allan De Los Reyes, Etok Lobo, Yves Dignadice, Elmer Lago, Bokyo Lauchengco, Jun Jabar

R.P. BASED COACHES: Virgilio Dalupan, Danny Florencio, Robert Jaworski, Rino Salazar

U.S. BASED COACHES: Oni Padilla, Jun Paguinto, Django Rivera, Peter Aguilar, Romy DeLa Rosa, Naning Valenciano, Boy Valera, Anthony Dasalla, Rey Yncierto, Jerome Cueto, Jose Francisco, Robert Concepcion, Ricardo J Cleofas, Danilo Basilan

THE EVENT

11:00AM was the official start time for the festivities. Tickets were at $20/bleachers and $40/ringside. Attendance towards the end of the event topped 3,000 people.

The actual legends game itself would take place a little bit later on. Meanwhile, visitors started arriving as early as 10AM hoping to catch a glimpse of their PBA idols. ABET GUIDABEN, BONG ADORNADO, YOYOY VILLAMIN, ALVIN PATRIMONIO, JOJO LASTIMOSA, and more players started the autograph signing. Set up at a long table close to the locker room, these celebrities patiently took their time in posing with fans, signing T-shirts and basketballs. Through out these event, the flash of digital cameras capturing photos of regular Fil-Ams with their tall PBA idols was ongoing.

Refreshments were served by the gate at the concession stands. The media station located by the entrance door sold basketballs for visitors who wanted to take advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity to have signatures on these balls from the players.

Like all Filipino-American events, this PBA happening was an opportunity for the local pinoys to get away from a boring week-end and spend time with kababayans, hoping to shake hands and have their photos taken with their sports heroes, past and present.

There were some pre-main event activities. One of which was a one on one three point shot duel between visitors and PBA legends. Surprisingly, this contest was won by guest Philip J Marte against Jojo Lastimosa. Score was 19-18. Close score which just goes to show how basketball can be anyone’s passion.

The actual main event itself kicked off about 3:00PM. The two teams represented Martin Purefood (Red team) and Ohana Harbor Coffee(white team). The players were introduced. The teams were a mix of both RP and USA based players.

Here is the first five line-up for both teams.

MARTIN PUREFOOD/Red Team - Fabioso, Guidaben, Cesar, Co, Adornado

OHANA HARBOR COFFEE/White Team - Arnaiz, Coloso, Paner, King, Fernandez

True to form playing comedian, Atoy Co(red team) jokingly complained from the very beginning that there were more players at the white team. He tried to obtain compassion from the crowd who just laughed at his antics. Atoy, by nature, is so full of energy in such a funny way that everyone loves him.

1st quarter score Red 24 -White 16
After the first 5minutes of the game, it seemed that time and age had indeed caught up with our heroes. The effort put in playing full court basketball showed in their breathing and body language. Stooped over trying to regain wind, some players realized they should have exercise more to get back in shape for this legends reunion. However, as the game progressed, they regained the skill of pacing themselves and managed to avoid more air balls. White team started slow and barely making their shots. a couple of missed lay ups. Red team did better, making their shots and controlling the game.

2nd quarter score Red 48- White 43
White team shooting better and keeping within winning distance from the Red team. However Red team point guard RONNIE MAGSANOC’S superb ball handling keeps the white team at bay.

Half Time
One on One Rivalries (2 minute pick up basketball)
Arnaiz VS Fabiosa - Fabiosa wins 3-0
King Vs Cesar - Cesar wins 5-2
Cesar Vs Fernandez- Even score 0-0

3rd Quarter score Red 80 - White 69
Red team stretches the lead with better shooting and passing.

4th quarter score Red 104 - White 100
White team close to catching up with Red Team. ATOY CO and couple team mates posing for pictures in the middle of court while game still going on. Audience cracks up laughing while referee pretends to get mad.

END SCORE: Red Team 104 - White Team 100

The event winds down about 5:30PM with group pictures of the teams taken by photo journalists at the media station.

Going back to ABE KING JR. Projected funds generated by this event to assist the needy would be between $20-30 thousand. Depending upon the success of the USA tour, he hopes to take the show to Europe. Maybe Italy or England where there is an influx of Filipinos. Most likely the East Coast sometime next year. He hopes to expand the genre of PBA players from the baby boom to the present batch of players.

The PBA Legends is like a fraternity. Composed of talent who knew each other well and quite happy to renew the friendships. There are Filipinos overseas who thru the actions of this group, might take it upon themselves to help our poorer countrymen. The example set up by such a group proves that the Philippines is not forgotten. There will always be that link which says, “You can’t deny your roots. Embrace it. Meanwhile.. lets play ball!”

Written by: John F Lacson
Photos by: Albert Vargas
Slideshow: Ver Penaranda

nastrans
03-18-2008, 07:32 PM
ANY PBA reunion game is not complete without former Seven-Up Uncola forward turned TV/movie comedian Jaime "Jimmy Saints" Santos! :D

I cannot forget how Santos, a benchwarmer during his playing days, by his lonesome stole the limelight from his superstar contemporaries via a slew of comic antics when the PBA held a reunion in honor of the league's 20th Anniversary. As a rule, only players from the pioneer batch of 1975 were allowed to join.


The funniest play he did was when he passed the ball to the referee even though he was wide open for an uncontested layup, nanullify ata yung basket niya nun. ;D

stonecold316
03-20-2008, 02:02 AM
Nakaka miss ang mga PBA Legends lalo na si Big J.

stonecold316

gameface_one
03-20-2008, 10:34 AM
In Huddle
A heart-warming PBA reunion


By Beth Celis
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 01:31:00 03/20/2008


BUENA PARK, California—Francis Arnaiz arrived at the Knottsberry Resort Hotel Saturday morning a bit hunched and hobbling.

He said he had not played in decades and his body was severely punished last weekend in Union City and Sacramento where he saw action in two games, including a one-on-one sideshow with Bernie Fabiosa.

“I’m aching all over—knees, back, neck, everywhere,” said the 56-year-old PBA legend who flew from Sacramento with wife Bebe and 22-year-old daughter Tammy, who has the looks of a movie star.

Francis said he was bracing himself for more punishment that weekend.

“I felt so weird while I was walking through the corridors of the locker rooms, bag in hand. I felt transported back to the time when I was still playing for Toyota. I had goose bumps all over my body. It was déjà vu. It was the first time my children saw me play,” said Francis, who still has the moves and can still run without huffing and puffing.

“I was just putting up a good front,” he said.

* * *

When they were younger, Francis said the players were so engrossed with themselves, their rivalry and their fans that they did not appreciate each other.

“But now it’s different. We’re just like one big happy family. No more competition, just friendship and camaraderie. It’s such a good feeling.”

Back in the hotel after a two-hour drive from San Diego where the last game of the PBA Grand Reunion Tour was played, we caught Abet Guidaben wheeling his luggage out. He said he was flying back to New Jersey that night and he had to hurry or he’ll miss his plane.

He shook hands with Francis and gave me a buss. Foundation secretary-treasurer Ruffy Ignacio rated Abet as the most physically fit among the veterans. He was the highest pointer in the game in Carson City.

“Hope we meet again soon,” said Abet, who’s in the construction business.

Francis gazed at him with a questioning look.

“Ganun na lang ba yun?” he said.

* * *

After the game at the Arco Arena in Sacramento, the Big J and wife Evelyn and their children Ricci and Ron headed for the Mercy Hospital where former Meralco and Toyota teammate Big Boy Reynoso was confined at the Intensive Care Unit.

The Jaworskis were accompanied by Abe King.

Sonny said Big Boy has been in and out of the ICU, and contrary to an earlier pronouncement, is not really out of danger yet.

“The latest report is that Big Boy did not have a stroke. He has an internal bleeding, but they cannot find the source, that’s why they cannot treat him,” the Big J explained.

To avoid further aggravating his condition, the family of Big Boy continues to keep the death of younger brother Tino from him.

In the absence of Sonny and Evelyn, who flew to Las Vegas to provide moral support to kababayan Manny Pacquiao, former congressman Dodot Jaworski and younger brother Ron subbed for their parents in the game in Carson City.

* * *

After more than three years, I got the real lowdown on the Rudy Distrito case from no less than Rudy’s estranged wife Jo, an Ilongga who’s very easy to like.

According to Jo, who always has a smile on her face, Rudy will finish serving his term this November. She confided that her youngest son has been hoping that they would reconcile, but she said she likes her life now as a single parent.

It was an unsolicited advise, but like Jo’s son, I urged her to give Rudy another chance. That is, if she still has some feelings for him, no matter how small.

“You can learn to love him again, if you give yourself the chance,” I said.

As we listened to Eric Leano sing “September Morn” that Sunday night at dinner, I noticed that Jo, who was seated next to me, had that faraway look in her eyes. She said she couldn’t understand why, but happy memories of her life with Rudy were flooding back, crowding out the sad ones.

stonecold316
03-22-2008, 09:27 PM
PBA legends wow fans in CA’s exhibition games
03/22/2008 | 07:43 PM
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Former superstars of the Philippine Basketball Association relived rivalries on the hard court again, but this time in California and for a worthy cause.

The exhibition games by PBA legends aimed to raise funds for scholarship grants to poor and deserving students and medical-dental missions in depressed urban areas in the Philippines.

Other players played in the preliminaries of the series held by the PBA Legends USA Foundation to raise funds for its various programs.

The foundation is the brainchild of King, backed by Rey Santos, Rufino Ignacio and other fellow former cagers.

A statement on the PBA website Saturday evening said more than 60 former pros from Manila and various parts of the United States took part in the 2008 PBA Legends Grand Reunion Tour.

While they relived the good old days, they also brought joy and excitement to the Filipino-Americans in four major cities in California, the statement said.

Stars of the fabled Crispa-Toyota rivalry in the 1970s and early 1980s, and the finest players in the 1990s figured in a four-game series with Martin Purefoods-Crispa and Ohama Harbor-Toyota, which split their games.

Toyota took the first game, 91-89, at the Logan High School gym in Union City last March 8 but Crispa got even the next day with a 96-91 win at the Arco Arena in Sacramento.

Crispa took the third game, 104-101, in Carson City, but Toyota closed the series at 2-2, 94-86, in San Diego.

Alberto "Abet" Guidaben, a PBA pioneer who played with Crispa in the PBA's inaugural season, showed spring in his legs at 55, and fired 21 points to lead all scorers in the Carson City contest.

Fortunato "Atoy" Co Jr. and Ronald "Ronnie" Magsanoc scored 19 apiece and Isabelo "Jojo" Lastimosa Jr. added 16, Elpidio "Yoyoy" Villamin 11 and William "Bogs" Adornado 10.

Vergel Meneses scored 20 points to pace Toyota which also drew double-digit outputs from Gerald "Gerry" Esplana and Manuel "Manny" Victorino.

In San Diego, Meneses topscored again for Toyota with 23 with Jerry Codiñera and Timoteo "Tim" Coloso contributing 11 apiece, Roderick "Olsen" Racela nine and Ramon Fernandez and Francis Arnaiz with eight apiece.

The losing team drew double-digit outputs from Magsanoc, Villamin, Guidaben and Romeo dela Rosa.

Others who played for Crispa were Bernard Fabiosa, Philip Cezar, Alvin Patrimonio, and Santiago Cabatu. Allan Caidic played the first two games but rushed back to Manila to attend to a personal matter.

Those who played in the Toyota team coached by Robert Jaworski were Abe King Jr., Manny Paner, Arthur dela Cruz, Hector Calma, Paul Alvarez, Marte Saldaña and Yves Dignadice.

A series of one-on-one matches was also held during the tour. - GMANews.Tv

gameface_one
03-25-2008, 09:06 AM
Filipino fans in US cheer former PBA legends
abs-cbnnews.com


They can no longer play 40 straight minutes of basketball but the legendary hardcourt heroes of the old Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) managed to live up to their nicknames.



From the PBA Legands Games in Union City to Carson and San Diego, fans cheered for Ramon “El Presidente” Fernandez, Philip “Tapal King” Cezar, Atoy “The Fortune Cookie” Co, Bogs “Mr. Nice Guy” Adornado, and Francis “Mr. Clutch” Arnaiz.



"After being away so long, as you play more, you get a little more acclimatized… But I guess it's also the energy of the people that warms your heart," said Arnaiz.



"Enjoy na enjoy sila sa slow-mo game namin," joked Adornado.



There were moments when age showed as the legends wore down through the rough and tumbles of the game.



Manny Paner, the former “Ironman” admitted he is a bit rusty now. "Medyo mabagal na kami eh, hahaha."



Abe King, also known as “The Chairman of the Boards” could not help but feel a bit nervous. "Para rin ako rookie, you know,” he said, “[kasi] haharap ka uli sa tao.”



Some players did their best to prepare. "I'm taking care of myself, so medyo kondisyon,” said Abet Guidaben.



The crowd favorite though was Sonny Cabatu.



"Hindi lang naman yung magaling maglaro ang nagugustuhan ng tao… [it’s] the way you play the game," said Cabatu.



They played and relied on the younger PBA heroes led by Olsen Racela, Allan Caidic, Jerry Codinera, Bong Alvarez and Ronnie Magsanoc, who was voted tour Most Valuable Player.



"To be able to play with the pioneers is really a big deal for us, kasi talagang sila ang nagbigay ng daan para sa amin," said Magsanoc.



"’Pag nakita namin na medyo kinakapos na, that's the time na sumusuporta kami, kasi para sa kin, it's their show," said Codinera.



On the side, Fernandez and Arnaiz won their one-one-one match-ups with former archrivals, Cezar and Bernie Fabiosa. But the old animosity has been replaced by a rare display of camaraderie.



One thing that remained the same: the hordes of adoring fans.



In all four games in California, Filipino fans rallied behind their basketball idols.



This kind of devotion, organizers said, is enough for them to plan another trip down memory lane.
Ging Reyes, ABS-CBN North America Bureau Chief

amdgc82
03-29-2008, 03:52 AM
Achieve Anything: PBA Legends Tour sa Estados Enidos (http://www.abante-tonite.com/issue/mar2908/sports_any.htm)
Ronnie Magsanoc
www.abante-tonite.com

Mula sa San Francisco, lugar ng Union City tuloy sa Sacramento, bandang Arco Arena, tumungo sa Carson, Los Angeles, nagwakas sa San Diego, siyudad ng California. Ito ang naging makasaysayang riles ng biyahe ng mga tinaguriang Legends ng Philippine Basketball. Binaybay ng inyong lingcod, kasama ang mga tinaguriang PBA Legends na kinabibilangan nina Atoy Co, Philip Cezar, Abet Guidaben, Bernard Fabiosa, Bogs Adornado, Yoyoy Villamin, Sonny Cabatu, Allan Caidic, Jojo Lastimosa, at Alvin Patrimonio pati sina Don Ramon Fernandez, Francis Arnaiz, Abe King Jr., Tim Coloso, Manny Paner, Manny Victorino, Art Dela Cruz, Gerry Esplana, Jerry Cordiñera, Bong Alvarez, Vergel Meneses, Hector Calma, Marte Saldaña, at Olsen Racela ang mahigit labing limang libong milya patungong Amerika upang maging pangunahing handog ng PBA Legends USA Foundation.

Layuning makaipon ng sapat na pondo upang maging susi sa iba’t- ibang proyekto, tulad ng mga misyong medikal at dental para sa mga kapus-palad sa Pilipinas. Nais din maging tulay upang makapagbigay ng tulong sa mga di-gaanong pinalad na mga dating manlalaro ng basketbol sa ating bayan.

Tulong pang edukasyon ang siyang isa pang adhikain pagkatapos pa ay ang makapagbigay ng maliit na negosyo upang maiangat ang kabuhayan ng mga nangangailangan ng tulong pinansyal.

Sa kabuuan ng sampung araw sa Estados Unidos, ang mga dating samahan at barkadahan ay tumibay, panibagong mga pagkakaibigan ay nabuo. Di mabilang na salaysay ang naibato sa isa’t isa, ang tawanan at halakhak sa mga biyaheng “cross-country” ay parang musika sa mga tenga ng mga alamat ng basketbol.

Nag-mistulang mga simpleng tao sa gitna ng paghahalo ng mga pioneers ng PBA at sa mga sumunod sa yapak nila na naging mga Maestro din naman ng lumaon. Sa isang sandaling pagkakataon ay naging bata ang isip ng mga retiradong manlalaro sapagkat nagkaroon ng mahiwaga at espesyal na “bonding” ang grupo ng mga “Legends” na marahil ay di na matutularan pa.

Di man nawika ng isa man sa grupo, ay purong saya na animo’y dalangin ng lahat na huwag na sanang magwakas ang “Legends Tour”.

Maihahalintulad sa isang balintataw o shooting star na kay bilis darating at lilisan din naman kung kaya ang lahat ay yumakap sa kanilang pagkakabilang sa isang pahina ng kasasaysan ng Philippine Basketbol...Sana maulit muli! Ngayon pa lamang kami ay maghahanda na, tatakbo, tatalon, mag-eensayo!

Sisiguraduhing sa muling pagtawag sa aming mga pangalan upang muling magpakitang-gilas, kami ay ngingiti ng bahagya at magbibihis ng mabilis pa sa alas-kwatro upang maghandog ng saya at maglaro para sa inyo.

amdgc82
04-05-2008, 06:18 AM
The stuff legends are made of (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=sports3_april5_2008)
By Ronnie Nathanielsz
www.manilastandardtoday.com

WHEN Abe King first conceived of the idea of organizing a Philippine Basketball Association Legends Reunion Tour as one of the first major ventures of the PBA Legends USA Foundation, of which he is chairman, there were quite a few people, who said it couldn’t happen.

It’s not that they didn’t have faith in King, or his workhorse secretary-general Ruffy Ignacio, who at one point in his career managed the Country Fair Hotdogs team in the PBA. It’s just that it was likely to be a logistical nightmare and if history taught us any lessons it was that, sad though it may seem, there is a distressing mentality to put down rather than to pull up in our national character.

Working together for a common cause is often sacrificed for the more attractive, headline-grabbing penchant to divide and destroy. It’s a common feature of Philippine national life from politics to business and even to sports.

A cursory survey of large Filipino communities abroad, including the United States, indicates how difficult it is—if not almost impossible—to get our countrymen together into one single organization that could, because of its numbers, be a force to reckon with in local communities.

Regrettably, there are associations for every region and to satisfy just about every individual’s desire for attention and recognition.

But we had faith not merely in Abe, who has been a friend from way back when, but also Raffy, whose passion for success and commitment to get any task, no matter how difficult, accomplished, was slowly emerging in our exchange of e-mail and subsequent conversations.

Above all else was our own belief that there are underlying values and virtues among sports people that ultimately help conquer all odds and demonstrate a capacity to set aside the differences and to work in strengthening the ties that bind. The PBA Legends Reunion Tour proved this in full measure and set an example that hopefully, others will follow.

In many respects, the Abe King we came to know in recent times was a revelation that warmed the heart and lifted the spirits. We saw in him a transformation so deep and profound that we knew it had to be the handiwork of the Almighty, whose love and compassion can change the lives of even the worst amongst us.

This doesn’t in the slightest way imply that Abe was one of the worst amongst us. Indeed, he always had a kind heart and a friendly disposition but even among the best of men, there are times when they lose track of themselves and falter only to be extended a helping hand by God and like Abe, take it and embrace the message of hope that it conveys.

Francis Arnaiz, in many ways a preacher-man in his approach to life and the challenges of living, was amazed at the transformation in King and like all of us, who noticed the change upclose and personal when Abe visited Manila to talk to the PBA stars.

During a recent visit to Manila, Standard Today had a chance to talk to Arnaiz at length. “The guy has turned around.”

It seems that when King eventually got a hold of Arnaiz’s telephone number and called him about the possibility of playing in the Legends Reunion games, Francis told him “when I retired, that was it. I just gave up playing. Not because I don’t appreciate the sport. I just said to myself I’m going to start a new life. I will attend or even broadcast the games or do something. But I don’t want to play anymore.”

To be continued

stonecold316
04-05-2008, 12:07 PM
Nakakabitin ang article.

;D ;D ;D

Hindi ko gusto nun si Abbe King when he was still playing in the PBA (Presto and Purefoods) kasi parang ang yabang niya noon pero tumaas ang respeto ko sa kanya because of this noble activity.

stonecold316

The_Big_Cat
04-05-2008, 01:33 PM
Nakakabitin ang article.

;D ;D ;D

Hindi ko gusto nun si Abbe King when he was still playing in the PBA (Presto and Purefoods) kasi parang ang yabang niya noon pero tumaas ang respeto ko sa kanya because of this noble activity.

stonecold316



Abe King first played for Toyota and Great Taste. Great Taste changed its name to Presto. Purefoods was the last stop for Abe King in 1994. The coach of Purefoods that year was Chot Reyes, coaching debut ni Chot that season if my memory serves me right?

amdgc82
04-12-2008, 03:49 PM
The stuff legends are made of (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=sports3_april12_2008)
By Ronnie Nathanielsz
www.manilastandardtoday.com

THE Philippine Basketball Association Legends Grand Reunion Tour got under way on March 8 and 9 in Northern California and was, without a shadow of doubt, a resounding success.

The kickoff game in Union City saw a sellout crowd relive the glory days of the PBA with a dream game between the Crispa Redmanizers and the glamour team of the pro-league’s early years—Toyota.

The matchups were fascinating as they were when the superstars were in their prime.

Centers of attraction, Mon Fernandez taking on Abet Guidaben in an age-old rivalry, Abe King matching wits although having a big edge in bulk against the wily Philip Cezar and Francis Arnaiz playing basketball for the very first time since his retirement, facing Bernie Fabiosa.

There were also subplots that didn’t really take place when Crispa and Toyota battled each other for fame and glory in the first decade of the PBA, but they provided fans with the kind of memories they had longed for.

Tim Coloso squared off in defense against Atoy Co, while Bong Alvarez was matched up against one of the league’s pure shooters of all time—Bogs Adornado. Alvarez was pitching in for Robert Jaworski, who couldn’t suit up because of a shoulder injury that has bothered him for some time now.

But Jaworski, who still saw fans shrieking every time he looked in their direction or made a gesture, coached the Ohana Harbour Coffee team (Toyota) while Cris Calilan handled the Martin Purefoods team (Crispa).

“It was an Araneta Coliseum and Ultra atmosphere combined. Every time Fernandez held the ball fans screamed. When Co shot the ball from 3-point country, fans held their breath,” former broadcaster Ed Tayag reported.

Clearly, with the PBA games in recent years being telecast by The Filipino Channel of broadcast network ABS-CBN, the new generation of superstars typified by the likes of Alvin Patrimonio, had clearly made an impression on a generation that hadn’t really seen them in action live.

Vergel Meneses, nicknamed “The Aerial Voyager” for his high-flying acrobatics, was among the younger legends, who thrilled the fans by their mere presence. Others who drew raves were Allan Caidic, perhaps the finest shooter the PBA has ever seen and someone who can burn the hoops until today; Ronnie Magsanoc, who once formed the deadly Shell trio alongside the Benjie Paras and seven-time Best Import Bobby Parks; Jojo Lastimosa, who initially made waves in the amateur ranks when playing for the Cebu team Mama’s Love; Jerry Codiñera, Hector Calma and popular Sonny Cabatu.

In the opening game in Union City, the Jaworski-coached Ohana Harbour Coffee edged Martin Purefoods, but the following day, the tables were turned when the two teams met at the famed Arco Arena in Sacramento, the site where the Philippines beat Mexico, 5-1, in the World Cup of boxing last Aug. 11 and home to the National Basketball Association’s Sacramento Kings.

In the exciting one-on-one showdowns, Fabiosa got the better of Arnaiz in the opening duel, but Francis turned the tables on Bernie when they squared off in Sacramento, where Arnaiz is president of the Filipino basketball association.

The big men were bigger than before in terms of bulk, but they did show flashes of the brilliance that marked their battles in the heydays. Fernandez beat Cezar but Cezar then got the better of King before King defeated Fernandez in Union City.

Fernandez, showing some of the wily moves of yesteryear, outclassed King in Sacramento.

After their showdown, King reportedly told Fernandez: “Hindi pa tapos ang laban.”

But Fernandez retorted: “See you in LA and San Diego, Abe and Philip.”

In an innovative feature that gave fans a chance to take on Caidic in a 3-point shootout, it was clear that nobody could pull the trigger like “The Triggerman.” Heartened by the response of the fans, organizer Roland Abilo committed to stage similar shootouts in Los Angeles and San Diego on the weekend of the 15th and 16th. This time, however, Abilo said they would limit it to 20 contestants with the fans this time challenging Magsanoc, another great 3-point shooter.

Jaworski once again mesmerized the fans by his mere presence. His inspirational speech was touching and the fans drew strength from what he said. Most of those present hadn’t heard Jaworski speak publicly, but they were in awe at the manner in which he spoke and the message he conveyed.

Roger Sarmiento, a Fil-Am from Tarlac emphasized, “He is better than most politicians. He cares for the people. We need someone like Jawo in public service.”

To those of us who knew him well and watched his performance in the Senate, the voters’ failure to return him to the upper chamber was the result of a dirty brand of politics that so often keeps good men on the outside looking in, and in the end deprives the country of hardworking and decent leaders.

Tayag, himself a longtime friend and fan of Jaworski, said: “Delirious fans spilled over to the hardcourt to pose for souvenir pictures and get the autographs of their idols. The Big J was mobbed by fans while they chanted ‘Ja-wors-ki! Ja-wors-ki!’ The fans had to be led back to their seats so the game could continue.”

Ruffy Ignacio was perfectly right when he said they were festivities rather than games because of what he referred to as the glorious synergy between the Legends themselves and the audience both in Union City and the following day at the Arco Arena in Sacramento. As expected, Jaworski, despite the passing of the summers, remained a legend in the hearts and minds of basketball fans.

When Jaworski stood at center court to deliver his inspirational message on his birthday, people kept shouting his name at the top of their lungs, before singing “Happy Birthday!”

Jaworski remarked it was the most significant birthday he ever celebrated. Jaworski received a plaque of honor for being The Greatest PBA Professional Basketball Player of All-Time, as his wife Evelyn watched with a deep down sense of pride and love. Philippine flags and banners adorned the gyms, raising the fervor of a true Filipino undertaking that showcased the best traits of which we could be justly proud.

(To be continued)

amdgc82
04-20-2008, 06:57 AM
Stuff legends are made of (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=sports3_april19_2008)
By Ronnie Nathanielsz
www.manilastandardtoday.com

THE sheer emotion that surrounded the Philippine Basketball Association Legends Reunion Tour and the singular achievement of Abe King, Ruffy Ignacio, Rino Salazar and a host of others in demonstrating the inherent goodness of the Filipino and their unmistakable sense of caring, would probably serve to stretch this feature series for weeks.

But like all good things, this series must end, but not before we pay tribute to a bunch of good and decent men and women whom we are privileged to count as friends.

Abe was “King of the Boards” in the PBA, but his greatest achievement must surely be in showing the good sense and the determination to re-arrange his sometimes troubled life and to walk the path of family love stirred by his faith in the goodness of a caring, understanding and loving God and a charming wife Ligaya, whose personal beauty is submerged by the beauty of her inner being.

Ruffy, the former manager of the Countryfair Hotdogs team in the PBA, was as committed an individual as you could ever find. His passion to ensure the success of the Reunion Tours and his abiding faith in the Filipino impressed us no end.

Former coach—and a good one at that—Rino Salazar was a man we had a great deal of respect and affection for and together with his wife Rose, are friends whose presence we miss, but whose friendship even though we are separated by an ocean lives in all its fullness within our hearts.

There were others too numerous to mention, including the fans of yesteryear, who showed up at the games to share fond memories and take a memorable trip back in time. There were the players, who lit up our lives with their exciting brand of basketball in an era that we all yearn for. It was a time of glory woven around the magic of basketball, Philippine-style, epitomized by the “Living Legend” Robert Jaworski.

He was everything the fans wished for. Jaworski played his heart out every moment of every game, never ever gave up until the final buzzer sounded and played the game like a hard-court warrior. The fans loved him and he loved them back in his own special way.

The four Northern California games themselves once again rekindled classic rivalries with the superstars of the storied Crispa-Toyota rivalry re-enacting their fierce hard-court battles only this time with a far more amiable disposition.

Toyota edged Crispa in the opening game at Logan High School Gym in Union City, 91-89, and as expected Crispa, not wanting to go two down, exacted revenge the following day at the Arco Arena in Sacramento, 96-91.

The following Saturday, Crispa showed it meant business with a 104-101 victory in Carson City, but Toyota refused to concede and won the final showdown in San Diego, 94-86.

Abet Guidaben, the former Crispa star, showed he still had some spring in his legs at 55 years of age, according to one writer, leading all scorers with 21 points in the Carson City game, while Atoy Co and Ronnie Magsanoc pitched in with 19 points apiece, Jojo Lastimosa 16, Yoyoy Villamin 11 and Bogs Adornado 10.

Vergel Meneses soared high for Toyota with 20 points, while Manny Victorino and Gerry Esplana, were also in double figures.

amdgc82
04-25-2008, 07:02 PM
The stuff legends are made of (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=sports6_april25_2008)
www.manilastandardtoday.com

Continuation

Over in San Diego, Vergel Meneses continued his high-flying game top-scoring for Toyota with 23 points while Jerry Codiñera and Tim Coloso contributed 11 points apiece. Olsen Racela had 9 and Mon Fernandez and Francis Arnaiz 8 points each.

It really didn’t matter who won or lost, but far more important was the essential camaraderie that not just marked the games but the entire tour. It was at it should have been—a fun-filled affair to remember.

When Manny Paner was asked to identify the then strange-looking guy in front of him (Rene Canent), according to Ignacio, Paner said: “Baby Dalupan.”

That brought the house down.

Arnaiz’s two lovely daughters were at the games. It was the first time they saw their dad play. Ruffy Ignacio informed us that after the games, the daughters said they were so thankful and happy to be there. “A monumental bonding of daughters to father ensued.” That’s what this reunion was all about.

In fact, Ruffy said that the daughters of Francis were very pretty and could be movie stars in the Philippines. Why not?

The nicest thing about it all was that several of the players from Manila, such as Alvin Patrimonio, Ronnie Magsanoc, Jojo Lastimosa and several others, said they are willing to play in different venues in the Philippines to raise funds for the humanitarian projects of the PBA Legends USA Foundation.

Arnaiz put together his thoughts in an e-mail to Standard Today. Referring to the PBA Legends games in California, Francis wrote: “Amazing is all I can say. All my initial doubts about the whole project, whether the fans would come and see us oldies were, as it turned out, unfounded. They all came, they saw and left happy. The first game in Union City was a sold-out affair. For me, personally, it seemed surreal.

“As I walked toward the gym, with my bag on my shoulders, it felt just like old times. Entering the gym and seeing the hundreds of people cheering, really warmed my heart. A sense of gratitude toward the fans and pride to be a Filipino was rekindled in me... and I believe in all of us players present. Entering the locker room and seeing all the players I hadn’t seen for so long was such a joyous occasion. High fives and laughter and hugs were plentiful. All of us were genuinely happy to see each other.

“Although the majority of us played for different teams in different eras, we all had the feeling that we belonged to one family and that was the beauty of it all! Although unsaid, we all sensed that we were all part of a movement whose sole purpose is to help the less fortunate Filipino in whatever way possible.

“All the players were so accommodating to the fans as we signed countless autographs and posed for hundreds of pictures. I truly believe, Ronnie, that this is just the beginning of something noble, something good that every PBA player can look forward to in his retired years. A small way that we can give back to the community that made us who we are and to a nation and people that is so deserving of help.”

To be continued
Ronnie Nathanielsz

amdgc82
04-27-2008, 05:30 AM
The stuff legends are made of (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=sports3_april26_2008)
By Ronnie Nathanielsz
www.manilastandardtoday.com

Conclusion

WHAT is so amazing is that the Philippine Basketball Association Legends USA Foundation itself and the Legends Reunion Tour all started with a vision and a dream of Abe King and Ruffy Ignacio.

But as Francis Arnaiz so aptly noted: “Dreams come plentiful, but it is in the acting upon it that a lot of them do not take flight and simply just remain... dreams. But Abe and Ruffy, through their resolve and persistence, saw it through and they deserve all the credit. And to you, my friend, I want to personally express my gratitude for getting the word out that the Foundation is alive and God willing will continue on.”

Arnaiz concluded: “I dream of a day when every Filipino will walk in the newness of life. When the question will no longer be, what can one get, but what one can give. When we would all serve, rather than be served. A day when the worth of every Filipino will no longer be measured by what we have, but by what they have given away. I am happy to say that a small step to that day has already been taken.”

The entire family of the kind and generous Steven and Ronna Schreiner of Ohana Harbor Coffee Co., the patriarch of the PBA Legends Foundation—the big bosses of Abe King—were in attendance at the San Diego game. Steven’s mother, Blannie Schreiner; Ronna’s parents Willie and Donna Wilson, and Steven and Ronna’s kids (Stephanie, Jessica, Samantha and only son Wriley), flew all the way from Chicago in a private jet to join the festivities. They reportedly arrived after attending the annual stockholders’ meeting of Wrigleys.

Ohana, a Hawaiian term, means family, according to Ruffy Ignacio. “With their very heavy schedule, what greater gesture is there than for the Schreiner family to come and show support for the PBA Legends Foundation family—from one family to the other!”

Ruffy reported that Steven, besides watching the fun game, also observed the proceedings on the sidelines about shrieking fans frantically trying to get autographs and pose for pictures with their idols. I could read it in his eyes, Ruffy went on. “Unbelievable that after all those years, they still remember their heroes.”

He added: “These hardcourt heroes will again show their merit when they launch their charitable and educational projects for the poor in the Philippines and the US. And to all these, Ohana Coffee Company is our partner,” Steven smiled.

In a final message of thanks and gratitude to the supporters of the Foundation and the reunion project, King said: “Your heart of gold is the true foundation to the realization of our dreams to help our nation and its impoverished people. As long as there are people like you, I truly believe that true change is within reach.”

The recently concluded PBA Legends Grand Reunion Tour of Philippine basketball greats that everyone hails as a great success, is a fine example that it is indeed possible for Filipinos from different parts of the world, walks of life and generations to come together and accomplish something great. That we can join together in the future to help in the projects that the PBA Legends would like to accomplish for our people in need.

“With my wife, we are just like many others who work every day for the sustenance of our family. We strive to give our children a good education and to finish their studies. We are further blessed that we have employers [Steve and Ronna Schreiner], who wish to help in our charitable and educational projects. I also came to know Rufino Ignacio, whose integrity is beyond compare. It is with their support that the foundation has its beginnings.

“In the coming days you will be instrumental in bringing about happiness and joy to millions of our countrymen. We will all feel good and our minds will be clear and our hearts will be pure to wake up one day and to know that the honor is ours and we make triumphant the philanthropic projects of the Foundation.”

King concluded in this fashion. “The blessings of God come to those with good intentions and sentiments, in various times and ways, particularly those who are earnestly willing to help. May you find endless joy and comfort in the life that you can endow to your children.”

To us, the first step has been taken. Now, it’s time for all of us to walk hand-in-hand along a path filled with caring for others.

gameface_one
05-11-2008, 08:30 AM
In Huddle
PBA Legends to grace Independence Day rites


By Beth Celis
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 01:40:00 05/11/2008


BY THIS TIME Talk ‘N Text governor Ricky Vargas should have landed in Capetown, South Africa, after almost a day of hopping in and out of airplanes.

But Ricky didn’t leave for that important business mission without an appropriate sendoff. Two days before he left, he was the guest of honor at the launching of the 2006-2007 PBA Annual. It was the season Ricky served as the league’s board chairman. It was a very good year for the PBA, especially in terms of finances.

Burger King at the Glorietta was already overflowing with PBA stars when Ricky arrived last Thursday afternoon. Commissioner Sonny Barrios arrived early with his staff—comptroller Jimmy Sunglao, operations/technical director Rickie Santos, media bureau chief Willie Marcial and PBA ladies Hazel Ancheta and Roussel Ighot—to find PBA chairman Tony Chua of Red Bull and former Pasig Mayor Mario Raymundo already there. So was the entire Talk ‘N Text team led by coach Chot Reyes and Mac Cardona.

While superstars James Yap and Kerby Raymundo of Purefoods and Alaska’s Willie Miller, the 2006-2007 MVP, graced the occasion, I was eager to meet the special guests invited by Ricky, who, he said, were coming a bit late.

Ricky said he had invited his own basketball team of decades ago—the Kawilihan Compound cage squad—to the event.

* * *

The program had started when Ricky’s special guests arrived: His brother Jay Jay, his cousins Vic-Vic Villavicencio and Louie Vargas and his friend Freddie Ortiz. Tootsie Eduque-Marco, Ricky said, used to lead the cheering squad.

Vic-Vic’s younger brother Virgil was also there but I’m not sure if he played in the same era. Ricky’s cheering squad—Cathy Herrera, Tina Quintos and Alma Polintan—also lent their presence to the occasion.

It’s hard to understand how a simple celebration could make a man of Ricky Vargas’ stature happy but looking at him that night, I believe he was. Ronnie Nathanielsz even managed to make him roar with laughter with his wit.

* * *

Three Manila-based PBA legends were in the list sent by Abe King, chair of the PBA Legends Foundation USA to the organizer of the Philippine Independence day celebration, with a copy being furnished to me.

Allan Caidic, Manny Paner and Manny Victorino are expected to be with the delegation that will be in New York on June l2 for our nation’s Independence Day festivities, which include a parade and an exhibition game.

“We are excited about this event. At least the foundation is starting to be recognized far and wide,” said Abe. “PBA legends from all over North America will be converging in New York on that day.”

In addition to the Manila-based legends and Abe and Ligaya Pascual, others included in the chair’s list are Abet and Maridol Guidaben, Anthony and Emma Dasalla, Marte and Lelet Saldana, Etok and Lina Lobo, Tim and Edith Coloso, Rino and Rose Salazar, Eric Leano, Francis Arnaiz, Bokyo Lauchengco, Rey Lazaro, Estoy Estrada, Peter Aguilar, Jun Jabar, Yoyoy Villamin, Oni Padilla and Foundation officials Rufino Ignacio (secretary-treasurer), Roland Abilo and wife Edith and Danny Manalastas.

* * *

Every year on Mother’s Day, I am reminded of Fil-Am cager Eugene Tejada who suffered a serious injury while playing which resulted in paralysis.

Would you believe it’s been two years since that accident at the Ynares Center?

It happened on a Mother’s Day in 2006 during a game between Purefoods and Red Bull. Eugene was hospitalized for more than two months at the Makati Medical Center, and even at the time he was discharged, the prognosis wasn’t too bright.

Eugene left for California in a wheelchair. He wasn’t sure if he’d be able to walk again, much less play basketball.

To this day, Eugene continues to undergo therapy at a well-known rehab center in California. I witnessed personally that he can now walk with the aid of a cane in each hand.

Next Mother’s Day he may be walking with only one cane. Or none at all.

amdgc82
10-27-2008, 06:38 AM
PBA Legends to give scholarships
Monday, October 27, 2008
www.mb.com.ph

After conducting a successful medical mission in Antipolo City and Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija the past two days, the PBA Legends Foundation is setting its sights to a much important project that needs immediate action.

Fully aware of the sad plight of some former PBA players, including the popular enforcer Rudy Distrito, the Foundation also plans to include them in its "wish list" in order to help alleviate their sufferings, including their respective families, due to the current world financial crisis.

Part of their assistance to former PBA players, according to Abe King, president and chairman of the foundation, is to give their children scholarship grants.

Rivals before but now allies in the foundation’s effort to provide medical support to indigent patients – former Sen. Robert Jaworski of Toyota and ex-Crispa stars Atoy Co and Bogs Adornado and Presto’s Alex Marquez readily agreed to help King in his new mission.

"Primordial in our projects is to provide scholarships to the deserving students whether they are children of former PBA players or not, because I believe that it is one of the ways para ang buhay ng ating mga kababayan ay umunlad," said King.

"Gaya ng ginagawa ko sa aking mga anak, ayaw kong ang mga anak din ng kapwa ko player at ng iba pa nating mga kababayan na lumaki ng walang edukasyon na siyang dahilan ng kanilang paghihirap ngayon," King, who migrated to the US 10 years ago, said.

King, now a top executive of Ohana Harbor Coffee, said that the mechanics of the scholarship program are already being set in place by Foundation secretary general-treaurer Ruffy Ignacio, a topnotch engineer, and his wife Marlene, a physics professor in Seattle, Washington where the family is based.

Jaworski, one of the 25 greatest PBA players named during the pro-league’s 25th year anniversary, said he will support the project as best as he can and vowed to go out his way to solicit the support of some of his well-heeled friends from both the private and government sectors.

"Like my full-support to this medical-dental mission, I will also give my full support to any project the Foundation will undertake to help our poor and indigent kababayans," said the former playing coach of the fan-favorite Barangay Ginebra. "Napakagandang adhikain ito na dapat isakatuparan."

Co and Adornado also asked officials of the PBA to give their share in the scholarship project.

"We owe them a lot, so we have to help them," Co, now a successful businessman, said. "In fact, hindi lamang tayo ang dapat tumulong, pati ang PBA kailangan din silang tumulong. After all, kung wala din ang mga former PBA players na ito, hindi rin siguro mabubuhay ang PBA ng ganitong katagal."

"Rather than get people who did not even have a hand in the growth of the league, dapat kunin ng PBA ang mga dating players na maging member ng technical committee or whatever capacity," said Co.

Meantime, King disclosed that Distrito had already applied for parole but whether his request be granted or not will be known three weeks from now.

He also said that they are again planning to stage another round of exhibition series among PBA legends in Vancouver and Toronto in Canada, Hawaii, New York and Chicago in the East Coast and in Las Vegas in the West. —Rey C. Lachica