2014 FIBA World Cup: Team Pilipinas: Laban ng Laban

Norwood over Argentina
(Image from: FIBA.com)

I almost lost my mind early Tuesday morning while watching Team Pilipinas battle #3 ranked Argentina. What happened?

I witnessed not one, but TWO amazing dunks by our Gabe Norwood! Those attacks on the rim will be forever etched in my mind. I'm sure yours too once you see the video. Norwood  dunked over Luis Scola on his first rim-rocker while his second "poster" involved a ferocious lefty jam over Marcos Mata.  Man, those dunks were truly exceptional. Among the best I've ever seen!


Unfortunately, Gilas dropped their 3rd straight game versus Argentina and this was another heart-breaker. Pilipinas battled all-game long and never gave up even when they got behind by 15 points in the third period. Laban lang ng laban. They entered the 4th down by 10 points but they kept chipping at the lead and eventually got within striking distance, a single point with about 2 minutes left in regulation.

Gilas had the possession down by 1 with around 25 seconds left. The ball was on the hands of the "best PG in Asia", Jayson Castro. He dribbled around the right area of the three-point arc and tried to beat his defender off the dribble but that did not materialize. No pick/screen came from his teammates and with the shot clock winding down, Castro had no choice but to launch a desperation three that got partially blocked. Castro recovered the loose ball but it was ruled a dribbling error or traveling. Turnover Pilipinas, possession went to Argentina and they iced the game with their flawless FT shooting.

Some people might wonder why Jimmy Alapag (responsible for 5 threes) did not get the ball at the end or why an isolation play was designed instead of ball screens and pick and rolls. These are good questions for debate but these don't matter right now. The positives outweigh the negatives. What Gilas needs is our support and trust. Tiwala lang.

Our team had a chance to win and they tried their hardest. Smart-Gilas is still win-less but in our minds and hearts, they are already winners. Despite of the ungodly hours that Team Pilipinas played over in Spain, the past 3 games have given us Filipinos something to love and be very proud of.

There's no doubt in my mind that Gilas belongs in the World Cup and they (we) should stay there for the foreseeable future. Moral victories are good and Filipinos are beaming with pride every where but a WIN would feel a MILLION TIMES better. I believe we will get it sooner rather than later. Kaya 'yan! #LabanPilipinas #puso

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4 Comment

My Heart keep pumping fast AmazingWorldClassBasketball from our Gilas Boys #LabanPilipinasPuso


Chot Reyes please commit seppuku ASAP


It's easy to blame coach chot but we should also praise him and his staff for their work with Gilas.