'Composed' LeBron Lopez showed he belongs in Gilas, says Tab | Inquirer Sports
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‘Composed’ LeBron Lopez showed he belongs in Gilas, says Tab

/ 06:06 PM June 19, 2021
Francis "LeBron" Lopez made his Gilas debut vs Indonesia.

Francis “LeBron” Lopez made his Gilas debut vs Indonesia. FIBA ASIA CUP PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines–Francis “LeBron” Lopez is the youngest player in this Gilas Pilipinas roster at just 18, but he has proven to have poise beyond his age.

“He went out there and played with so much composure. He was productive,” national coach Tab Baldwin said of the high-leaping teen after the 76-51 victory over Indonesia in Friday night’s Fiba Asia Cup Qualifiers in Angeles City.

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“He’s young, he’s going to make mistakes, but I thought the most impressive thing about LeBron tonight was I could see that there was excitement there but he really made an effort to be composed, to play composed, and do the little things right at both ends of the floor ” Baldwin went on.

Lopez came off the bench and registered eight points, five boards, to go with an assist and a block during his debut with the National Five.

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His performance was so impressive that his name made Philippine Twitter’s trending topics.

Lopez, who plays for Ateneo High School, is the youngest player to don the Gilas red-white-and-blue on the Asian level since Jun Limpot did so in 1989.

And Baldwin assured the impressive showing doesn’t stop on Friday night.

“What he did tonight was an example of a good start for him. But only, you know, a drop of in the bucket of what we expect in the future,” he said.

“LeBron is there because we believe he belongs there and we believe in his future,” he added.

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