Franky Johnson hit a miraculous shot to complete the improbable run of the Phenom-Basilan Steel, Saturday afternoon.
With PHP 1,000,000 and a seat in the 2019 FIBA 3X3 Jeddah Masters at stake, Johnson threw an off-balance, fadeaway from the right corner. He knocked down the deuce in the race-to-two extra time period to lift Basilan to the top of the Philippine 3×3 world.
And even the 24-year-old guard out of Virginia Union admitted that it was an out-of-body experience.
“Everything was just moving so fast,” recalled Franklin, whose mother hails from Ilocos. “I wasn’t even thinking about that shot, but as soon as Troy [Rike] got the rebound and got the ball to me, I was just kinda open a little bit. So I just decided to pull it.
“Thank God it went in, so I’m really excited about that.”
Johnson has been pivotal in Basilan’s first-ever campaign in the country’s first-ever 3×3 league. But compared to his teammates, Johnson also has the least streetball experience.
That wasn’t by choice, though.
Last month, Basilan was invited to join the Haining Challenger in China. Unlike teammates Roosevelt Adams, Marcus Hammonds, and Gab Banal, Johnson was unable to get a visa, which meant Isabela City played with just three men.
But instead of lamenting, the California-born guard decided to just look on the bright side of it.
“The team went on to the Challenger in China and got some good experience there. I just got tips from them and [so I’ll] just go out there,” he shared.
This time around, though, he won’t let another opportunity pass. Come the Jeddah Masters this October, Johnson plans on laying it all on the line for his motherland.
“It’ll be my first time representing the country internationally, so I’m really excited about that. It’s for all my fellow Filipinos and my family here, and everybody supporting us all over the country,” he said.
“I just wanna go out there and do great.”
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