NBA star Jordan Clarkson is willing to don the Gilas Pilipinas jersey again should he be called up for future international competitions.
The Utah Jazz shooting guard has become the nationals’ main option on offense during the FIBA World Cup, where he averaged 26 points per game — second among all players behind Slovenia’s Luka Doncic.
Against China, he drilled five triples to finish with 34 points while leading Gilas to a 96-75 victory, their lone win of the tournament.
Clarkson believes he can still be a threat on offense when the FIBA World Cup returns after four years.
“Thirty-five isn’t that old. Thirty is the new 20, right? I still feel young. I’m still out here competing,” Clarkson said.
“I don’t think that’s my last performance in this jersey. I think I have more time. I can still hoop. I can’t even tell you what I’m eating in the morning,” he said.
“But yeah, hopefully, down the line, when that time comes around again, I’ll be able to put this jersey on and represent the country,” he added.
The win over China on Saturday night, September 2, salvaged what had been a disappointing campaign for Gilas Pilipinas, as they lost their first four assignments, including all of their games in Group A.
Their setback to South Sudan in the classification phase ousted them from contention for an outright Olympic spot. The Filipinos eventually scored a break through against China, with 11,000 fans cheering them on at the Big Dome.
For Clarkson, their 1-4 record in the FIBA World Cup is not really indicative of the work he and his teammates put into.
“It’s been a tough tournament, but we kept fighting, kept competing, kept playing. We really wanted to end this on the right note. We might not see the same guys in the locker room after this, but at the same time, we just wanted to show heart, fight, and continue the resilience,” he said. (ABS-CBN News)