Guiao keeping an even keel amid Clarkson situation | Inquirer Sports

Guiao keeping an even keel amid Clarkson situation

By: - Sports Editor / @ftjochoaINQ
/ 05:46 AM August 12, 2018

It has been kind of a roller-coaster ride for the men’s national basketball team to the Asian Games since it saved a spot for the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Jordan Clarkson.

There was the wave of optimism after Clarkson was cleared to suit up for the Philippines by Asiad organizers late Friday night. That was followed by the letdown as reports flooded in that the NBA did not clear Clarkson to play. And then there was a holding out for hope as reports sprouted about a last-second appeal to get Clarkson in a national jersey.


Throughout it all, one person kept an even keel, refusing to be sucked in the highs and lows of the Clarkson situation—mostly because he needed to.


“Hope for the best, expect the worst,” national coach Yeng Guiao told the Inquirer when asked how he was handling things.

“I’ve already read reports that he wasn’t given the clearance to play by the NBA,” added the mercurial mentor. “But then, during our practice (Saturday) morning, we were told that there had been no official denial yet. So we’re just waiting how the situation will play out.”

There is one thing Guiao can control—and he is focusing his energy toward that.

“We still have to prepare regardless of what happens,” Guiao said. “We still have to compete and represent the country. So whether or not he’s there, that’s what we’ll do. Prepare hard to try make the country proud.”

Strangely, the timing of the Clarkson situation actually helps Guiao ground his focus. Clarkson would be a solid addition to the squad and could easily be the focal point of the Philippines on offense. But with the possibility of his suiting up coming at the tail end of an already late start to preparations, Guiao was really left with no choice.

“We had to establish already how we’re going to play,” he said. “So if he doesn’t suit up, then our preparations wouldn’t be affected. If he does, then he’ll have to adjust to our system.”


Guiao had earlier said that Clarkson had the talent and basketball IQ to easily navigate his way through the team’s playbook.

“Besides, our system is really simple,” he told reporters earlier.

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TAGS: Asian Games, Jordan Clarkson, NBA, Yeng Guiao

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