After days of anxious waiting, the National Basketball Association has finally spoken out on whether Jordan Clarkson can suit up for the Philippine National Team to the 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia. And unfortunately, the verdict is that he the Fil-American star cannot.
In a statement released by the NBA:
“The NBA’s agreement with FIBA stipulates that NBA players can participate in the Olympics, the FIBA Basketball World Cup, Continental Cup competitions, and associated qualifying tournaments,” said NBA spokesperson Tim Frank.
“Because the Asian Games are not one of those competitions, NBA players are unable to participate. In accordance with the NBA’s agreement with FIBA, Jordan is welcome to represent the Philippines in the agreed-upon competitions,” he added.
Disappointed, the decision did not sit well with Philippine officials. POC secretary-general Patrick Gregorio was dismayed.
“WE tried our very best. Your Philippine sports leaders worked round the clock. So many sleepless nights. We were one clearance away…from a dear friend of the Filipino People. The NBA. Or so we thought.
Unfortunately , it fell on deaf ears. They applied a rule. A rule that will never be understood.
I am at a loss for words. All i can say is “NBA. YOU BROKE OUR HEARTS”
You broke the hearts of 100 Million Filipinos. We will never forget this.”
In a report from Spin.ph, SBP President Al Panlilio was likewise saddened and hoped that the NBA would remain fair. He singled out the case of NBA player Zhou Qi who was allowed to play for China at the Asiad.
“Of course, very disappointed. I hope rule applies to all consistently.“
With these developments, the Philippines is now down to 11 players. The 12th slot could be handed to Trollano if the Philippines’ appeal is approved by the organizers as mentioned in a report from the Manila Bulletin.
Christian Standhardinger eligibility issue
After Clarkson, there looms another issue on the horizon. This is with regards to Christian Standhardinger who is reportedly facing eligibility issues in another report by Waylon Galvez of the Manila Bulletin.
“The requirement for players like him is that he’s either born in the country or a resident for (past) three years. He’s not, so that’s an issue,” according to an unnamed source in the report.
If this is not resolved, a worst-case scenario would be to see the Rain Or Shine-backed PH team with only 10 players.