Having Jordan Clarkson a possibility for Gilas in the FIBA ​​WC

Having a Filipino NBA player wearing the national colors has always been a dream for every basketball fan here in the Philippines.

Fil-Am Jordan Clarkson has been the closest bet in the country with his grandmother from Bacolor, Pampanga. However, he failed to obtain a Philippine passport until he turned 16, which prevents him from playing as a local for the national team in FIBA-sanctioned tournaments.

Despite being ineligible, SBP executive director Sonny Barios revealed on Tuesday that the Utah Jazz goaltender is still among the choices to be Gilas’ naturalized player for the upcoming FIBA ​​Basketball World Cup. 2023 which will be co-hosted by the country alongside Japan and Indonesia. .

“It’s also on the table. ‘Yung Kay Jordan Clarkson is on the tableBarrios said on the Philippine Sportswriters Association forum.

“Kasama ‘yan sa pinag-uusapan his preparation for the most competitive team we can have.”

Clarkson was able to represent the country at the 2018 Asian Games since the tournament was not sanctioned by FIBA.

Barrios reiterated that Chot Reyes will still lead the search for possible naturalized player options for the Gilas program.

“Having a naturalized player is also on the table and is also on Coach Chot’s radar ⁠— ‘yung issue ng naturalized player, kung sino, at anong klase,“He shared.

In previous years, NBA veteran Andray Blatche saw action for the Philippines at the 2014 and 2019 FIBA ​​Basketball World Cups. Currently, the national team counts Ange Kouame and Christian Standhardinger as the two big men who can eventually become naturalized players for Gilas in FIBA-sanctioned tournaments.

Other candidates in the past include PBA imports such as Justin Brownlee of Barangay Ginebra and Chris McCullough of San Miguel.

Although open to exploring other options, Barrios revealed that finding a big one remains a priority for Gilas.

Ultimately, SBP will assess the suitability of each of the applicants alongside local players from the national championships with the aim of fielding the best possible team for the tournament.

“We are not looking for leaders. ‘Yung elimination process, nandoon tayo sa greatest is best siguro unless meron tayong is an option na hindi kalakihan but talent, skill is what the team needs’ he offered.

“Again, you compare that to the materials you have on the local side. Name the composition of the team, huh. So kung ano ‘yung saswak o tutumpak ‘dun sa materyales mo sa local which will be mutually complementary to the naturalized guy.

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