SMC Offering Stars to Gilas
San Miguel Corporation, which owns three teams in the PBA, is not turning its back on the Philippine team after all.
Knowing how important the mission of the Philippine team in the FIBA-Asia Championship this August, the giant food and beverage corporation is offering three of its marquee players, including a rookie center.
SMC Director for Sports Noli Eala said yesterday that Petron Blaze rookie Jun Mar Fajardo, San Mig Coffee's Marc Jean Pingris and Barangay Ginebra San Miguel's LA Tenorio will all be available to the national team that Chot Reyes is trying to form.
"Junmar, LA and Ping are also available to Gilas if they want them. Wish Gilas all the best," said Eala yesterday through his Twitter account @NoliEala. Of the three he mentioned, Tenorio played for Reyes in last year's Jones Cup in Taiwan.
Reyes has mentioned Fajardo and Pingris in his 'wish list' to be part of the Gilas Pilipinas pool, from where he will select the final composition of the national team for the FIBA-Asia tournament, which is the qualifier to the 2014 World Championship in Spain.
The top three teams in the FIBA-Asia will earn a berth in the World Championship.
This is the first time that SMC offered its players to Gilas Pilipinas, as the 6-foot-11 Fajardo can play back-up to naturalized 6-foot-11 center Marcus Duthit, while the 6-foot-6 Pingris is known to be a ferocious rebounder.
Tenorio, on the other hand, has already proven his worth many times.
In the Jones Cup, he emerged as the MVP with his razzle-dazzle play and long bombs which carried Gilas to victory over the United States.
After already sacrificing in the Jones Cup, Tenorio and other members of the team are included automatically in the pool. …