With the way Gilas has been playing lately, I will go out on a limb and say that we will beat Puerto Rico!
Let’s see . . . we lost to Croatia in overtime, a game we could have won, we kept it close against the Greeks,
and we nearly surprised Argentina. I say that the best international game I have ever seen Gilas play was against Argentina yesterday. Playing practically the entire first half without naturalized center Andre Blatche, the Philippines made their 3-point shots and even led Argentina by 10 points. Argentina made adjustments and led by 15 points before the Philippines made its mighty comeback behind the three-point shooting of captain Jimmy Alapag. Unfortunately, end game poise did in the Philippines but that’s nothing to be ashamed of.
I admit I haven’t been following much the games of Puerto Rico. I understand Arroyo will be out. With him out, the hopes of Puerto Rico rests on Blackman and Barea. Will Blackman play unbelievably well against his “beloved” Philippines? I believe Blatche can take Blackman and our guards can contain Barea. Arroyo is a big loss for Puerto Rico and their team has been underachieving because of this. The Philippines matches up better with Puerto Rico as compared to the taller European and South American teams.
I believe the Philippines will beat Puerto Rico if they truly learned from their first three games. Despite the losses, there are many positives to build on. Just focus, keep your head high and play your attacking game! Your nation is behind you and very proud of you! The international basketball community has taken notice of you. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if Philippines pwins the bid to host the next FIBA World Cup! Laban Pilipinas! Go for the win!