Dream Team indeed is the crack Philippine National NBA2K Team for the inaugural FIBA Esports Open happening from Friday to Sunday.
How stacked is the team? For starters, the squad will boast 99-ratings in all positions.
This, as all members of E-Gilas Pilipinas are decorated in their own right.
Rocky “Rak” Brana is a ProAm Season MVP. Al “Alt” Timajo is a ProAm 2K Vets League champion. Philippe “Izzo” Alcaraz IV is the 2018 NBA2K Asia champion. Meanwhile, “Clark” Banzon, Aljon “Shintarou” Cruzin, “Rial” Polog Jr., and Custer “Aguila” Galas are circuit veterans.
That is why for Izzo, he and the team are not worried heading into their best-of-five encounter against Indonesia. On the contrary, the E-Gilas V are supremely confident.
“Sir Magoo [Marjon], kapag plus-20 sila, kakabahan na kami.
“Parang ganon ‘yun. Doon kami kakabahan kasi mahirap ‘pag ganon eh,” he told Tiebreaker Vods’ 2OT, presented by SMART last Wednesday.
Confident as they are, there is pressure that comes with competing in a FIBA-sanctioned event.
For all of them, this is a dream come true, as they can finally don the country’s colors on the global stage.
“Sa akin parang… Hindi ako makapaniwala at first,” expressed Rial.
“Siyempre FIBA po ‘yan diba? So parang feeling ko PBA player ako na isinalang sa Gilas Pilipinas. So parang surreal ‘yung feeling saka feeling blessed po talaga.”
The current situation of the country, wherein almost everyone is working at home, has definitely helped E-Gilas form brotherhood and camraderie.
“Wala naman pong nagbago. Ang pinagkaiba lang po hindi lang kami nagkikita-kita. Pero ‘yung routine namin to play with each other every day, same lang,” said Clark.
Come Friday, E-Gilas knows that it’s time to walk the talk.
But for them, they have played in more pressure-packed situations. Facing Indonesia will just be another day in the office.
“Ang pinaka-challenge ‘yung nakalaban ko ‘yung kapwa ko Filipino doon. Actually ‘yun lang,” said Izzo about facing Indonesia.
“‘Yun ‘yung pinakamahirap. Skill-wise kasi, pagdating sa 2k, ang husay ng mga Pilipino.”