PBA and UST basketball great Danny Florencio, 70, passes away


Posted at Feb 25 2018 12:11 PM | Updated as of Feb 25 2018 05:51 PM

Danny Florencio celebrating his 70th birthday in September. Florencio, considered one of the most prolific scorers in Philippine basketball, died over the weekend in the US. Handout

Danny Florencio, considered one of the greatest scorers in Philippine basketball, has died.

According to the family, Florencio suffered a heart attack at about 9 p.m., Friday (US Pacific time), in Velif, Calif. He was 70.

Rino Salazar, a former Barangay Ginebra head coach and Florencio's contemporary, said: "No farewell words were spoken, no time to say goodbye, you were gone before we knew it and only God knows why."

Florencio, one of the most revered basketball players in the history of University of Santo Tomas, was part of the last Philippine team that competed in the Olympics -- in Munich, Germany in 1972.

He played in the MICAA league, then continued his career in the PBA, where he featured for 8 seasons. He is part of the PBA's "40 greatest players" list.

Getting buckets was Florencio's calling card.

He is the first local player to drop more than 60 points -- 64 to be exact -- doing it in November 1977, a record that stood for 14 years until Allan Caidic broke it by scoring 79.

Florencio finished his stint in the PBA as the ninth-fastest player to score 5,000 points.

At about 5-foot-9 or 5-foot-10, he was considered one of the most entertaining players of his era, earning the nicknames "Daredevil Danny" and the first to be called "Skywalker," a label more famously attached later to Samboy Lim. -- With a report from Anna Gabrielle Cerezo

His family is planning to bring his ashes back to the Philippines.

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