MANILA, Philippines - Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny V. Pangilinan is keen on continuing his support to the FIBA 3x3 World Tour and may form a partnership with SM Prime Holdings Inc. for similar projects in the future.
SBP executive director Sonny Barrios said MVP has always been concerned with the satisfaction of the fans and saw how much the public enjoyed the just-concluded 3x3 event where a four-man PBA selection representing Manila West ruled the meet at SM Megamall.
Barrios added Pangilinan, also the chairman of Smart and PLDT, and SM Prime Holdings Inc. president Hans Sy, both of whom attended the final between Manila West and Doha, have discussed “future collaboration” for similar projects.
Barrios, meanwhile, bared that FIBA 3x3 top officials Alex Sanchez and Ignacio Soriano have offered “unconditional support” for what the SBP may need to help popularize even more the event in the country.
“They are encouraging us to be in the forefront of pushing the 3x3 program in the region after witnessing its resounding success in the two-day tournament,” Barrios said. “We’ll be taking a look at our grassroots program in the last quarter of this year to see how we can make that happen.”
Meanwhile, Barrios will leave for Doha tomorrow to attend the FIBA Asia Congress and election of officers.
Incumbent Sheikh Saud Bin Ali-Al-Thani of Qatar is seeking a fresh four-year term as FIBA Asia president from 2015-2019 along with current secretary-general Hagop Khajirian of Lebanon.
“MVP wants to show FIBA Asia that our federation is an active participant in the affairs of our zone,” said Barrios, who will be casting SBP’s vote in the FIBA Asia polls.
MVP and Sy, meanwhile, awarded the top prize of $10,000 to the golden quartet of Aldrech Ramos (NLEX), Rey Guevarra (Meralco), Terrence Romeo (Globalport) and KG Canaleta (Talk ‘N Text) after their 21-17 conquest of world champion Doha of Qatar in the final.
Both finalists earned passage to the FIBA 3x3 World Tour in Tokyo this October where qualifiers from Beijing, Chicago, Prague, Lausanne and Rio de Janeiro will converge.
Manila West advanced to the championship round after beating Auckland of New Zealand in the quarterfinals, 14-9, and Jakarta, 18-14, in the semis. Doha arranged a finals date by overwhelming Calvin Abueva’s undermanned Manila North, 21-8, in the round of 8 and turning back Surabaya, 20-15, in the final four.
Ramos accounted for two of Manila West’s four long distance two-pointers in the last two minutes, including the one that ended the match to the jubilation of the home crowd and the chagrin of the towering Qataris, whose best shooter 6-foot-8 Mohd Yousuf Mohmmed (11 points with five two-pointers against Manila North) was limited to six points.
The celebration wasn’t confined to the tournament proper as Romeo ruled the side event shootout contest and both Canaleta and Guevarra made it to the finals of the slam dunk competition.