PBA legends, celebrities play in charity basketball event

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 17 2021 04:12 PM

Pingris, Helterbrand and Anderson among participants

Sam Verzosa (middle), chief executive officer and president of Frontrow, is shown with PBA legend Jayjay Helterbrand (second from right) during the press launch of the 'Battle of the All-Stars: Play To Inspire' charity basketball event. Also joining them are former PBA player Jerwin Gaco (right), 3x3 player Mac Tallo (second from left), and Dan Reducto. Handout
Sam Verzosa (middle), chief executive officer and president of Frontrow, is shown with PBA legend Jayjay Helterbrand (second from right) during the press launch of the 'Battle of the All-Stars: Play To Inspire' charity basketball event. Also joining them are former PBA player Jerwin Gaco (right), 3x3 player Mac Tallo (second from left), and Dan Reducto. Handout

MANILA -- The stars from the local basketball circuit and the entertainment industry will collide in one charity event before Christmas Day.

Billed as "Battle Of The All-Stars: Play To Inspire," the charity event will feature PBA legends Marc Pingris and and Jayjay Helterbrand, celebrity ballers Gerald Anderson, JC Tiuseco and DJ Loonyo and some of the finest cagers in the country who will join forces in a two-day charity basketball event starting December 22 at the SV Ball Park. 

A member of the PBA's grand slam team from the old Purefoods franchise, nine-time champion Pingris will be back on the hard court since announcing his retirement from the PBA.

This time, he will be playing in a 3X3 basketball event where he will share the court with former rival Helterbrand, the former Barangay Ginebra star who was the PBA's Most Valuable Player in 2009.

Joining the two in their PBA Moto Vlog squad are other former PBA players Billy Mamaril, Rico Maierhofer, and KG Canaleta. 

Anderson, Tiuseco and Loonyo, a professional disc jockey and artist, will be playing on different teams.

Sam Verzosa, the event founder, who is also the man behind Frontrow Enterprise, put up the event for its main beneficiary -- the Mabuhay Deseret Foundation, which takes care of individuals with disfigurations and other debilitating conditions like those with cleft lip, and persons with eye conditions such as cataract and clubfoot and prosthetics.

"This charity basketball event is all about, not just inspiring, but helping. We, at Frontrow, are always in the business of helping and changing people's lives. Of course, this is also for the love of the game of basketball, for the players and our chosen beneficiary," said Verzosa.

"We've been doing charities for the past 10 years and we've been giving donations. Now, we want to change lives, so we chose Mabuhay Deseret, the people who need surgeries like cataract surgeries, cleft lip and clubfoot surgeries. This will be a life-changing experience for them. We want to be a part of that." 

"The Battle Of The Stars: 'Play To Inspire" charity basketball event is sponsored by Tutuk To Win Party List and Frontrow Cares with Wilson as the official ball.

Other notable players taking part in this event are former PBA stars Mac Cardona and Ryan Arana, and 3x3 specialist Jay-R Alabanza, who will see action for Spade Vapes; Tallo, Dan Reducto, Mark Yee and Jerwin Gaco, who will play for SV Squad; Fran Yu, who will backstop Luxxe Slim; brothers Ricci and Prince Rivero and Jojo Cunanan seeing action for Frontrow Cares; former PBA star Ronald Tubid, playing for Luxxe White; and Paolo and Derrick Hubalde seeing action for Luxx3 Protect.