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PBA Stars Non-Committal on Gilas Pilipinas Stint

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Several Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) are non-committal on suiting up for the Gilas Pilipinas in the third window of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers to be held here this February.

PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said some players in the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) wish list have begged off as they were recovering from injuries from the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup bubble.

“I already talked to some of them. Some will go while some begged off since they are still recovering from injuries,” said Marcial, who said that the list of PBA players joining the national men’s basketball team is yet to be finalized.

According to the PBA commissioner, he tried his best to convince the listed players to join the training bubble that started over the weekend at the Inspire Sports Academy in Laguna but some politely decline.

“We can’t force them to enter another bubble since they just came there a month ago,” Marcial said. “In the end, it’s still the players decision to make, not ours.”

So far, Ilonggo guard Kiefer Ravena of NLEX Road Warriors was the lone PBA cager to enter the “Calambubble,” with the invited PBA players expected to enter the facility by January 22.

Ravena joined Gilas Cadets Isaac Go, Matt Nieto, Mike Nieto, and Rey Suerte who will be joined by Javi Gomez de Liano, Dave Ildefonso, Justine Baltazar, Calvin Oftana, William Navarro, Kenmark Carino and Angelo Kouame in the bubble.