Baldwin wishes for more time with Gilas
Tab Baldwin saw his new Gilas Pilipinas pool for the first time Monday night and is actually wishing for the impossible to happen.
“I wish I could be with them every day, get as much time as I can with them every day,” Baldwin told the Inquirer over the phone. “But we all know that that’s impossible. That’s the case with most national teams.”
Baldwin started his Mondays-only practices with 17 PBA superstars at Meralco gym as Gilas prepares early for the final Olympic qualifying tournament set in July next year where the Filipinos will be playing against country’s outside of the Asian continent.
“I think, save for China, all the other teams around the world have very limited time as far as preparing with their national teams is concerned,” he said.
He wouldn’t actually say the exact time he thinks is needed to whip this batch of Nationals into a team that could battle European powerhouses, only stating that he would want to handle them “as early as I can.”
June Mar Fajardo, the reigning two-time PBA MVP, and Marcio Lassiter of San Miguel Beer, and Greg Slaughter, Japeth Aguilar and LA Tenorio of Barangay Ginebra have reportedly confirmed attendance.
Fajardo and the rest of the San Miguel-owned team members—save for Marc Pingris of Star—begged off from joining the last Gilas squad that also finished second to Iran in the Jones Cup in Taipei last August.
The Gilas team would need to top the final qualifier they would be in next year to make it to Rio de Janeiro.
Naturalized center Andray Blatche and Filipino-American Jordan Clarkson of the Los Angeles Lakers could be available for Gilas by that time.