‘Weird,’ says Jordan Clarkson of boos directed at Gilas coach Chot Reyes
Jordan Clarkson admitted that he finds it dispiriting to hear the home crowd boo Gilas Pilipinas’ head coach Chot Reyes in the 2023 Fiba World Cup, especially with the Philippines co-hosting the tournament.
Still licking his wounds from a 90-83 loss to World No. 10 Italy on Tuesday that left the Philippines winless in the group phase, Clarkson said the jeers directed at Reyes felt a “little weird.”
“Especially us hosting and us being the home country,” he added. “But yeah, I really don’t know much about the situation, but like you’ve said, it does, at that point, feel a little weird. It’s out of the ordinary, honestly.”
Watch: The announcer introduces Gilas Pilipinas. But head coach Chot Reyes is booed by the home crowd.
Watch til the end. pic.twitter.com/0MSFphUuzP
— Lance Agcaoili (@LanceAgcaoilINQ) August 29, 2022
Reyes, for the second straight time, was met with boos during the team introductions. But this was not the first time that Clarkson commented on the vile reception showered on the national coach.
“I think we need to change our actions and show love and nothing but peace here,” the Texas-raised guard said almost exactly a year ago today, when Gilas whipped Saudi Arabia, 84-46, in the World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
“He ain’t gotta deal with none of the boos. He ain’t gotta deal with none of the threats people give his family, anybody,” Clarkson added. “I mean, he’s part of us, he’s one of us.”
Kiefer Ravena, who also came to Reyes’ defense that same time last year, was no longer surprised that it happened again.
“It’s not the first time,” before heading back to the dugout. “I know it’s been happening. But I’m going to play for my coach until the wheels fall off.
“It’s just something that I have to lead by example—me and Japeth (Aguilar) and the guys who have been here.”
Ravena said that the home crowd—once minted by Fiba as the best in the world—should be a strength of Gilas, not its weakness.
“You have to use this crowd as an advantage, not a disadvantage. After all, it’s the reason why this event was brought here,” he added.