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Jordan Clarkson hopes to see Jalen Green in Gilas

Jordan Clarkson has been part of so many Filipino Heritage Nights organized by NBA teams.

But Houston’s rendition of the night last Friday morning (Manila time) was the most special for the seven-year pro.

For the first time in the 75 years of the Association, two players of Filipino descent played in the same game. Clarkson’s Utah Jazz took on Jalen Green’s Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center.

“It’s an amazing experience because this is something that can never be done again because we were the first. And hopefully we see more come to the league,” expressed Clarkson after Utah’s 122-91 win.

After the game, Clarkson and Green gathered the Filipinos in attendance for a Q&A. Some of the notable Filipinos who watched the game included reporter TJ Manotoc, agent Charlie Dy, and Fil-Am Nation founder Cris Gopez.

And in front of everyone, the 29-year-old Clarkson hopes that the 19-year-old Green fixes his paperwork soon so that he can suit up for Gilas Pilipinas. Clarkson played for Gilas during the 2018 Asian Games.

2021-22-NBA-Season-Jazz-vs-Rockets-Jordan-Clarkson-vs-Jalen-Green Jordan Clarkson hopes to see Jalen Green in Gilas Basketball Gilas Pilipinas NBA Philippines News  - philippine sports news

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“The next thing we got to work on is to get Jalen in those jerseys,” said Clarkson, referring to Gilas’ blue and white.

“I don’t want to say too much right now. It’s early, it’s early,” quipped Green.

Complicated will be the process of Green playing for Gilas as it will involve a switching of federations.

From 2018-19, Green played for Team USA in a couple of FIBA youth tournaments.

2019-fiba-u17-world-cup-usa-def-mali-jalen-green Jordan Clarkson hopes to see Jalen Green in Gilas Basketball Gilas Pilipinas NBA Philippines News  - philippine sports news

FIBA rules state that “A player who has played in the main official competition of FIBA after having reached his seventeenth (17) birthday may not play for a national team of another country.

“However, in exceptional circumstances, the Secretary-General may authorize such a player to play for the national team of his country of origin if he is ineligible to play for such country according to this article and if this is in the interest of the development of basketball in this country.”

Green can also utilize the ruling that states that if two federations (USA Basketball and the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas in this case) agree, he may secure release to play for another national team. This, since he last played for Team USA when he was just 17.

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Come what may, Green simply feels honored that Filipinos still embrace him wherever he goes.

“To come out here and play the game I love, just having the Filipino country at my back, I’m always grateful.”

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