Asian Games-bound Gilas Pilipinas head coach Yeng Guiao said that he will announce the final 12-man lineup for the quadriennial meet hosted by Indonesia on Friday evening.
“Bukas after practice,” said Guiao after their practice Thursday night at the Meralco Gym in Ortigas, Pasig City — their fourth practice heading into the showpiece next week.
The veteran mentor said that he already has 10 players in the lineup, and the last two spots will be fought for by Don Trollano, Asi Taulava, and Gilas Cadets Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras.
“One or two people are being considered na lang,” said Guiao.
The shoo-ins are the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters’ core of Beau Belga, Raymond Almazan, Maverick Ahanmisi, Gabe Norwood, Chris Tiu, and James Yap plus former Elasto Painter Paul Lee.
Stanley Pringle and Christian Standhardinger — who both played for Gilas in the FIBA 3X3 World Cup 2018 here in the Philippines — and Poy Erram are also in Guiao’s unit, presumably.
“Meron na akong idea pero ang ano natin is we will still need to consult the coaching staff and the SBP officials for the final lineup. But malapit na. Nandoon na tayo sa dulo,” he said.
What makes everything unsure though is the possible addition of NBA cager Jordan Clarkson. Given that, Guuao admitted that he has yet to know if he will leave a spot for Clarkson or not.
“That is another thing that I will need to discuss with the SBP officials. Kailangan ba naming mag-reserve ng isang slot para sa kanya o hindi? I dont know the answer to that yet,” said Guiao.
“Maybe I’ll know tomorrow. Kung magre-reserve ng isang slot, then baka almost tapos na yung lineup kung ganun.”
But when asked if the addition of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ 6-foot-5 guard is a risk worth taking, the outspoken mentor agreed.
“Sa akin, okay lang. There’s a possibility. Kung wala namang possibility, bakit ka magiiwan ng isang slot. But if there’s any possibility,” said the decorated Guiao.
“I think it’s worth the risk.”