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Chot bares Malonzo classified as local by FIBA, working on Adams’ status

Despite focusing on TNT’s PBA Philippine Cup, Chot Reyes is still working as Gilas Pilipinas Men’s program director.

And as program director, the six-time PBA Coach of the Year has bared that the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas has received clearance that Northport’s rising star Jamie Malonzo is eligible to play for the national team as a local.

Malonzo had actually been telling Reyes that he is a local as he received his Philippine passport at the young age of eight.

“Dito pa lang sinabi niya sa akin, ‘Coach, why are people saying that I am not eligible? My mom keeps saying that I am eligible.’ Pagpunta ko ng Las Vegas, nag-usap kami, akin na yung passport,” said Reyes after TNT’s 117-112 win over Northport on Wednesday. “I had a copy of his passport that he got when he was just eight years old. All this while, he is eligible. It just took for me to just ask him.

“So we brought the passport, went through the FIBA process, and now he has been cleared, and now he is part of the FIBA portal as a local.”

2022-PBA-Philippine-Cup-Northport-vs-TNT-Jamie-Malonzo Chot bares Malonzo classified as local by FIBA, working on Adams’ status Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News PBA  - philippine sports newsMalonzo, 25, is a huge 6-foot-7 winger out of De La Salle University.

He is currently averaging 19.0 points, 11.8 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, and 1.8 steals in six games played for the Batang Pier.

Reyes has already been granted by the PBA board to add Malonzo to the pool. Now, it’s on Malonzo’s court to make it to the team.

“We are not saying that he could make the team but he is eligible. It’s one thing about being eligible, but it’s another about making the team. It’s my job as a coach to see how many people are part of the pool.”

2021-PBA-Philippine-Cup-TNT-vs-Terrafirma-Roosevelt-Adams Chot bares Malonzo classified as local by FIBA, working on Adams’ status Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News PBA  - philippine sports news

(C) PBA Images

Another player Reyes hopes to get clearance from FIBA is restricted free agent Roosevelt Adams.

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“Yun na next na we are working on. Let’s have our fingers crossed. He has a passport,” said Reyes.

Adams, a 6-foot-5 knockdown shooter, told Tiebreaker Times that he received his Philippine passport when he was nine years old.

The top overall pick in the 2019 PBA Rookie Draft hopes to clear the hurdle as well.

“If given a chance to represent the country would be a great honor,” the 28-year-old forward, who is a good pal of Malonzo, told Tiebreaker Times.

Adams did not renew with Terrafirma after his contract expired last January.

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