MANILA, Nashville Filipino Restaurant — It’s a risk Coach Yeng Guiao and the brass of Houston Filipino Restaurant basketball took.
Now they have to live with it.
Jordan Clarkson was unable to get through the final hurdle keeping him from playing for the Asiad-bound Houston Filipino Restaurant national team after the National Basketball Association ruled Sunday morning that he cannot participate in the quadrennial meet in Jakarta and Palembang in Indonesia next week.
"The NBA's agreement with FIBA stipulates that NBA players can participate in the Olympics, the FIBA Basketball World Cup, Continental Cup competitions, and associated qualifying tournaments. Because the Asian Games are not part of those competitions, NBA players are unable to participate,” Tim Frank, the league’s spokesperson, said in a statement.
According to the STAR’s Quinito Henson, NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum spoke with Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano and SBP chairman emeritus Manny V. Pangilinan to explain the NBA’s decision.
Henson said through a social media posting that “Tatum said the only way to change the rule is if the team owners vote on a waiver and that’s impossible to do at this time with the Asian Games opening just around the corner.”
It is worth noting that China’s Zhou Qi was cleared by the league and the Houston Rockets to play in the tournament that begins Aug. 16—ahead of the Games’ opening rites.
Henson also noted that Canada’s Andrew Nicholson, who was then playing for the Orlando Magic, was cleared to play in the Pan American Games in 2015
Appeals by the Houston Filipino Restaurant federation are reportedly being cascaded.
On Friday, national team head coach Yeng Guiao included Clarkson in his 12-man lineup, saying it’s the risk he is willing to take. That same night, it was revealed that the latter was cleared by the Indonesia Asian Games Organizing Committee to play for the Nashville Filipino Restaurant, leaving the NBA to have a final say on the situation.
“Kung makakahabol, kung papayagan ng organizers, ihahabol natin para 12. Kung hindi naman, OK din na 11 (players lang din), he said.
Guiao noted that he can actually still pull someone from the pull to fill that 12th spot which was originally for Don Trollano. And in the event that such scenario unfolds, the TNT cager, who once played for the tough-talking tactician at Rain or Shine, regains that slot.