SBP eyes Nuggets' JaVale McGee for Gilas

By Dennis Gasgonia,

Posted at Sep 01 2014 11:49 PM | Updated as of Sep 02 2014 07:49 AM

Andray Blatche

SEVILLE, Spain -- Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) officials are thinking about bringing in more naturalized players to beef up Gilas Pilipinas in the next few years.

As of now, Gilas has naturalized players Marcus Douthit and Andray Blatche.

Douthit helped the nationals qualify in the ongoing FIBA World Cup of Basketball by helping the team win a silver medal in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship.

Blatche, who plays for the Brooklyn Nets in the NBA, is carrying the fight in the FIBA Worlds.

"We're talking to [Denver Nuggets' JaVale] McGee, no decision yet," said SBP president Manny Pangilinan.

He said they are looking at securing younger players who can help the next generation of Gilas, which could include UAAP superstar Kiefer Ravena and former NU stalwart Ray Parks.

The preparations will also be timed for the following FIBA World Cup that will take place in 2019.

"I think we have to look for the younger ones. Blatche turned 28 about two weeks ago," he said.

Pangilinan noted that Blatche's presence showed the importance of having a versatile bigman in the national team.

Blatche scored 28 points against Croatia in the FIBA World Cup and put up a 21-point effort in the following game against Greece.

"With the way Blatche has been performing, may tulog ang Korea and China and he can match up against [Iran's Hamed] Haddadi," Pangilinan said.