by Khristian Ibarrola
Jordan Clarkson will be leaving Indonesia without a medal draped on his neck, but his awe-inspiring stint for the Philippines in the 2018 Asian Games has earned him the love and adulation of millions of our countrymen.
After leading the hastily-assembled Rain or Shine-Philippines squad to a 5th place in the quadrennial meet – the country’s best finish in 16 years – the Cleveland Cavaliers guard took to Instagram to express his gratitude to finally be able to don the national tri-colors.
“This experience was one I will never forget so blessed to play for the country and represent the flag and the people!” the 26-year-old former NBA-Rookie First Team captioned a photo of himself along with his RoS-Pilipinas brothers during a huddle. “Loved playing for coach, along with my teammates/brothers building bonds that will hold strong”.
Clarkson will report back to his mother team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, who will take part in a training camp for the upcoming 2018-19 NBA season in October.
Although he failed to lead the country to a podium finish, the Filipino-American cager made it clear that he intends to heed the country’s call in future international tournaments.
“More to come! Can’t wait for the next time I get to put the colors on. Laban Pilipinas! Puso!” he wrote.
this experience was one i will never forget so blessed to play for the country and represent the flag and the people! loved playing for coach, along with my teammates/brothers building bonds that will hold strong. thanks for the opportunity and the support! MORE TO COME! CANT WAIT FOR THE NEXT TIME I GET TO PUT THE COLORS ON! LABAN PILIPINAS! PUSO!
During his short but sweet stint for the Philippines, the highly-touted Clarkson showed a glimpse of how scary our national team could be with him at the forefront. Clarkson top-scored in three of the four games he played for the flag, capped by 29 points, six assists and four rebounds-outing in the Philippines’ 109-55 rout of Syria.
He also congratulated all the Filipino athletes who nabbed medals in the Asiad games, and shared how he hopes to also obtain one for the country in the near future.