BOCAUE, Bulacan – Just last Wednesday, there were no guarantees that Christian Standhardinger could even play for the Philippines in the 2018 FIBA 3x3 Basketball World Cup.
Standhardinger had missed the San Miguel Beermen's last two games in the 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup due to inflammation in his left knee; he even had to get some fluid drained from his knee with how swollen it was.
But there was simply no stopping Standhardinger from competing in the FIBA 3x3 Basketball World Cup.
"Christian was still questionable until 48 hours before the competition started," said Team Philippines coach Ronnie Magsanoc. "But he was all in . . . Everything was hanging in the balance, but he indicated that he was all in."
Standhardinger was still not at his best when the Philippines opened its campaign against Brazil. His left knee was wrapped in a protector, and his mobility quite limited.
Yet that did not stop him from muscling his way inside the paint to get the Philippines on board, and he showed no fear battling with the physical Brazilians for every rebound.
"It hurts a lot," Standhardinger said of his knee. "But it didn't claw up on me, so we're good."
"I feel awesome about the first game, because we won," he also said.
Standhardinger accounted for one field goal and two free throws against Brazil, and he said that he can play a lot better in the evening when the Philippines faces Mongolia.
"I think there's much, much more I can make," he said. "But I think I did well."
"We'll do the same thing, and we'll build up on that," he added.
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