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2021 SEA Games

Chot Reyes to meet with PBA as UAAP players not available for SEAG

It seems like the Philippines will be sending an overpowering all-pro team to the 31st Southeast Asian Games.

But unlike in 2019 wherein it was mandated by the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee for each federation to send their best of the best, it is because of necessity this time around.

According to Gilas program director and head coach Chot Reyes, the student-athletes from the University Athletic Association of the Philippines will not be available for the SEA Games.

The Games take place from May 12-May 23 in Hanoi, Vietnam. By the opening ceremony, the UAAP had just wrapped up its men’s basketball tournament.

2021-fiba-oqt-belgrade-serbia-def-gilas-team Chot Reyes to meet with PBA as UAAP players not available for SEAG 2021 SEA Games Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News PBA UAAP  - philippine sports news

Photo from FIBA.Basketball

“I don’t think we’ll have any of the collegiate players because I think the UAAP will end on May 12 at the earliest and May 19 at the latest,” said Reyes after Gilas’ 88-63 loss to the Tall Blacks in the 2023 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

“The Southeast Asian Games, if I’m not mistaken is May 12 so I don’t think we’ll have the UAAP players at our disposal.”

This would mean that the triple tower combination of Angelo Kouame (Ateneo), Carl Tamayo (UP), and Justine Baltazar (DLSU) won’t be available. Same with the likes of Ateneo’s Geo Chiu, SJ Belangel, and Dave Ildefonso, and, as well as FEU’s RJ Abarrientos.

Most likely, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas cannot tap players from the National Collegiate Athletic Association as their season will happen at the same time as the UAAP’s.

Overseas Filipino pros will not be available by then as well as the B.League, T1, and National Basketball League-Australia end mid-May as well.

#ReadMore  CJ Perez uses SMB-Ginebra game as warmup for Gilas grind

That is why Reyes and the federation are set to talk to the league on whether they can lend their players to the national team.

After all, the ongoing 2021-22 PBA Governors’ Cup ends in April at the latest.SEAG-2019-Basketball-Philippines-Gilas-Mens-and-Womens-Gold Chot Reyes to meet with PBA as UAAP players not available for SEAG 2021 SEA Games Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News PBA UAAP  - philippine sports news

“First of all, we have to meet with the PBA to synchronize calendars. We’re looking now at the Southeast Asian Games.

“Another thing to take into consideration; who are the players who are going to be available? Unfortunately, I can’t answer that question because we have to sit down and actually craft the plans,” he said.

The Philippines has won 18 of the 20 gold medals in the SEA Games, including the last 13.

With reports from Jeremy Chua

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