A familiar face is manning the sidelines for the Stockton Kings of the NBA G-League.
Former Gilas captain and all-time Philippine basketball great Jimmy Alapag is enjoying his second season as assistant coach for the G-League affiliate of the Sacramento Kings.
"It’s been an amazing experience to work with someone like Bobby Jackson who has so much experience in the NBA," he said. "It's been an opportunity for me to learn a lot."
At 20-6, the Kings are at the top spot in the G-League's Western division.
They beat the South Bay Lakers on March 12 to clinch a playoff spot.
The Lakers, currently in third place in the West, have a player with Filipino lineage on their roster as well — the second-year guard Nate Pierre Louis.
"That was a big win for us," said Alapag. "South Bay is a tough team, and they’re even tougher at home, so we knew coming in here, it was going to be a playoff-type game.
Alapag added: "I’m really happy for our guys, they made enough plays down the stretch to get the win."
Alapag was born and raised in San Bernardino, about an hour east of Los Angeles.
He also played college hoops at the California State University in San Bernardino.
Many family members and friends have come out to show support for the Kings' assistant coach.
"It’s a little tougher during the season because we’re so busy and my family and I are in Sacramento," Alapag said. "But it's always great to have family around."
The G-League playoffs begin at the end of March.
After the season, the G-League staff will have a chance to work with the Sacramento Kings roster. That gives Alapag more chances to work with NBA-level talents.