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Glen Rice's Optimism on Philippine Basketball

Pilipinas represent! The very first Filipino Heritage Week was celebrated by the NBA from March 13 to 19. The commemoration of rich Filipino culture and hospitality filled the air and the walls of the NBA Store in Trinoma. The richness and love for the game also exuded by the Philippine-themed games spearhead by Filipino community filled Golden State Warriors and Filipino-coached Miami Heat. Props to the NBA store staff's reception and recreation of an adrenaline filled ambiance.

NBA stalwart Glen Rice graced the country for the second time to participate in various activities such as the NBA Cares event and a pair of viewing parties. The charismatic 3-point specialist did not disappoint as this writer was challenged to a shoot-out and won prizes. Glen Rice, being the sport that he is truly made each encounter with the fans personable and warm.
When asked about his playing days, he fondly recalled the story of how he earned his moniker, "GMONEY." According to him, a teammate gave it to him because of his shooting accuracy. In basketball terms, every basket made by a player is money. So every time Rice shoots, its guaranteed money. When asked, who his ultimate competitor was, it wasn't a surprise that Michael Jordan always came up.
Filipinos stand a better chance of making it to the NBA nowadays according to Rice. The evolution of the game gave rise to a different breed of players. Today, having height is not a necessity of a great advantage. Opportunity's ingredients are effective practice, determination and encouragement. Soon, a homegrown Filipino player will be seen hooping in an NBA court.
Engaging as Glen Rice is, may the inspiration and encouragement to Filipino players all over continue. A push to the right direction like the NBA Filipino Heritage Week is sometimes all a dreamer needs: To get his head off the clouds. Plant his feet firmly on the ground and shooting. - Allan Paolo P. Zerna

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