Baldwin on Clarkson situation: 'It's in suspended animation' | Inquirer Sports

Baldwin on Clarkson situation: ‘It’s in suspended animation’

By: - Reporter / @MusongINQ
/ 11:25 AM September 06, 2015

Los Angeles Lakers' guard Jordan Clarkson. AP

Los Angeles Lakers’ guard Jordan Clarkson. AP

TAIPEI – Gilas Pilipinas coach Tab Baldwin knows how to read between the lines.

“So it’s in suspended animation,” Baldwin told Filipino scribes on Saturday night, referring to the latest in the Jordan Clarkson saga where the ball was thrown by Los Angeles Lakers owner Jeanie Buss to head coach Byron Scott.

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“We don’t know anything, who knows?” Baldwin went on. “Maybe the [Lakers]coaches are under instruction, maybe it’s [really] the coaches’ decision. I don’t know.”

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Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas vice chairman Ricky Vargas on Saturday afternoon released a statement that it would be up to Scott and the rest of his coaching staff to grant or deny Clarkson permission to finish the Fiba Asia event with Gilas.

The Lakers had granted Clarkson permission to play until Sept. 27, or before the tournament gets into its knockout stages, and said that all personnel must be in Los Angeles by the following day for Media Day.

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Training camp also starts the day after in Hawaii, and it will run until Oct. 7.

If Clarkson is to play for Team Philippines all the way and the Filipinos get to the gold medal game, he will be available to go back to the United State only on Sept. 5 at the earliest, which would mean taking part in training camp only in the last three days.

“We can speculate all we want, but I’m not much of a speculator,” Baldwin, who has so far steered the Filipinos to a 5-2 record in the Jones Cup and to a second place finish with an expected win over Chinese Taipei-B at 1 p.m. on Sunday, said.

“I haven’t got this puzzle figured out,” he went on. “I don’t even know what the picture looks like yet. I don’t know if he (Clarkson) is in the equation.”

Clarkson, whose mother is Filipino, has pledged to play for Gilas up until the 2024 Olympics.

Should he make it to the tournament with Scott’s blessings, he could ultimately give the Filipinos a huge hand in qualifying for the Games for the first time in close to four decades.

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The Fiba-Asia championship, where Iran will be defending the title in Changsha, will stake just one Asian slot to the Rio de Janeiro Games in Brazil next year.

TAGS: Basketball, Byron Scott, FIBA Asia, Gilas Pilipinas, Jeanie Buss, Jordan Clarkson, LA, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, Philippines, Ricky Vargas, SBP, Tab Baldwin

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