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Monica Jorge vows to continue dad Nic’s MILO BEST legacy

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Tiebreaker Times Monica Jorge vows to continue dad Nic's MILO BEST legacy Basketball News  Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum Nic Jorge Monica Jorge Milo Best

Monica Jorge still remembers the time when no one believed in her late father Nic’s vision after the esteemed mentor established the Basketball Efficiency & Scientific Training Center, better known as the MILO BEST Center. 

“Nung nag-start talaga ‘yung BEST Center, walang naniniwala,” recalled the BEST Center executive vice president in the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum.

“Walang naniniwala na kailangan ng school for basketball.”

But fueled by his love for the game, the former national team coach went forward with his passion project. And eventually, BEST Center grew to what it is now, something that the younger Jorge cannot help but marvel at.

“Dinevelop niya ‘yung coaches niya, ‘yung program, dinevelop niya lahat, and lumaki. With the partnership with MILO, lumaki ng ganito,” she said in the session powered by SMART and presented by San Miguel Corp., Go For Gold, Amelie Hotel Manila, Braska Restaurant, MILO, and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), with Upstream Media as webcast partner

“Kung talagang for his own pride lang, dapat pinangalan niya na Coach Nic Jorge’s Basketball Clinic. Pero hindi eh, kasi nga passion niya, kaya talagang BEST. Ang forefront talaga is basketball, it’s not Coach Nic.”

Over the years, the BEST Center has served as a springboard for many cage stars, such as Benjie Paras, Jerry Codiñera, Jun Limpot, Larry Fonacier, Chris Tiu and Kiefer Ravena, to name a few.

To this day, Jorge’s brainchild remains the benchmark of basketball training in the country. He may have already passed, but his daughter vows to continue the legacy he has left behind.

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“Legacy niya ‘to eh,” she said.

“Even with his passing now, I think we are still ready. We’re still in it. Dahil nga we know gaano siya ka-passionate, and we’ll continue this. We’ll continue this.”

The world continues to feel the crippling effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and BEST Center is affected as well. But that won’t stop the institution from evolving, as it remains committed to teaching the younger generation.

The 42-year-old training academy is set to resume its cage clinics through virtual method starting Sept. 26, with three online programs already lined up.

“We will do what we’ve been doing. Kasi kahit na medyo nandito kami sa position na ‘to, sabi nga ni Coach Nic before, ‘We cannot stop learning.’ It’s not kunyari nagtuturo kami, that’s it. Kailangan kahit kami, matuto pa rin. So even with this pandemic, we’re still researching, watching through YouTube, because that’s the only way for us to learn how. So once na nag-ano na, on-ground training na ulit, we can apply it. Tuloy-tuloy,” she said.

“Tuloy-tuloy ang learning sa amin, ‘yung mga coaches. Kaya nga even before, before we start ‘yung summer classes namin, every year, everybody, all the coaches, we go out-of-town. Meron kaming mga training and seminars before teaching the kids again. So, ganun pa rin ang gagawin namin. Kung ano yung tinuro sa’min ni coach Nic, ‘yun pa rin ng gagawin namin.”

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