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Golovkin vs. Rubio Live Stream

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Watch Gennady Golovkin and Marco Antonio Rubio battle it out for the WBA Middleweight Championship here. Also, witness Nonito Donaire taking on Nicholas Walters for the WBA Featherweight Title here.


Sakuragi gets signature shoes with Jordan Slam Dunk series

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Hanamichi Sakuragi's legacy will now live on with his new personal
apparel line courtesy of the Jordan brand. Nike
Sakuragi finally gets his own kicks! No, not the Pinoy Sakuragi as in Marc Pingris. Not even Japan's naturalized big guy J.R. That Sakuragi!

Hanamichi Sakuragi, the lead character of the well-known manga turned anime Slam Dunk, will be immortalized as the Jordan brand unveiled the fruits of its newfound partnership with the manga's creator, Takehiko Inoue.

"I have been inspired by Michael Jordan's game, as well as his attitude. It's been a great honor to have this opportunity," said Inoue, a fan of MJ.

One of the Slam Dunk-inspired shoe line released was the new Jordan Super Fly 3.

The Super Fly 3 will bear Sakuragi's number ten, formalizing the Slam Dunk lead as the first fictional character to have a player-exclusive shoe line.

Also, the Super Fly 3 has Sakuragi's face drawn on it, and the shoebox also bears excerpts from the Slam Dunk manga.

The Nike Air Jordan VI will also have some "Slam Dunk-ness" in it as a special edition bearing Sakuragi was released.

The Slam Dunk edition of the Air Jordan VI is a homage to the manga, which was first published in 1990 during Jordan's sixth NBA season.

Even Sakuragi's jersey was given life as the Jordan brand also introduced a t-shirt with the details of the Shohoku #10 kit and a hat with Sakuragi's number embroidered on it.

The new Jordan brand Slam Dunk series is now available in all Titan stores.


I wanted NU to win

Friday, October 17, 2014

As part of a sports media outfit, I resolve to a principle to adhere: to stay neutral at all times. However, when NU took Game 2 of the UAAP Finals against FEU, I felt, "This could be the Bulldogs' time." NU may be the fourth-seed (only the second time it happened), but the team played like the top-seed (curiously, NU was the top-seed in the only other time the number one team got ousted in the semis last year) in that win. And then, I kept this in my mind: I want NU to win Game 3!

To think about it, my mom (the second of eight children) was not yet born when the Bulldogs won their only UAAP title, and my grandma was still pregnant with her eldest daughter. The shotclock was just being introduced in the NBA, and the Philippines was fresh from winning the bronze in the FIBA World Cup. The word "televison" was still new to the minds of the Filipinos, and social media was not even planned then.

From that 1954 feat, or at least since NU's only other Finals appearance in 1970, the team experienced a downfall that accelerated during its "dark ages" in the 80's. The 90's would witness Arnel Sunga, Danny Ildefonso, and Lordy Tugade wear the blue and gold, but NU just could not make the Final Four, which was introduced by that time.

The Bulldogs finally made the Final Four at the turn of the century, but they could not pick up the slack from there and even fell to the cellar again. Enter Eric Altamirano and Ray-Ray Parks. The former Purefoods coach and Georgia Tech prospect ignited a huge uprising that led them to consecutive semis appearance and a great shot at the championship after getting the best record last year. Tough luck, UST happened.

This year's NU was similar to last year's UST. The Bulldogs also needed a playoff win to enter the Final Four (while the UST-Ateneo game was officially an elimination round game, by technicality, it was a wildcard playoff since both teams were tied for fourth then) and bucked a twice-to-beat disadvantage to shock top-seeded Ateneo. When Mac Belo shot the game-winner for FEU against La Salle (I predicted Ateneo vs. La Salle in the Finals), I thought the Finals will last the full three games.

Indeed, it happened. FEU took Game 1 in a wild finish but got bludgeoned in Game 2. After I interviewed my blogger friends at Blogapalooza, I first spilled the beans to one of them, the only one who answered FEU (she's an alumna of the school). I told her that I wanted NU to win because the time is now, similar to another respondent's answer.

I covered Game 3 at my lonesome (apparently, my superiors, who would love to watch the finale, were not available that time), and I witnessed history. FEU got off to an early lead, but NU came back and took a double-digit edge. The Tams threatened to reclaim the lead, but the Bulldogs were really playing inspired basketball. Alfred Aroga, not known for his free throw shooting, was accurate from the stripe (surprisingly too, his teammates who do better struggled). J-Jay Alejandro was on track to do an encore of his epic performance against the Blue Eagles. Kyle Neypes was deadly in the catch-and-shoot. Simply, NU happened.
The NU crowd was feeling it already.
Two minutes left in the match, NU led by a huge margin, and I wanted to cry. It was a dream moment--seeing a then moribund collegiate team completely evolved to a championship squad. The clock read 0.0, and the 60-year wait is over! I felt the nostalgia of 1954, even notches higher.
The NU bench began to celebrate.
Troy Rosario bursted out in tears of joy.
Glenn Khobuntin's parents witnessed his road to triumph.
After the win, I wanted to congratulate my college blocmates
I witnessed it all!
who are now NU professors, but with a jampacked NU side of the Smart Araneta Coliseum, I could not trace them (I later found out that they did not watch the game live). Still, I was blessed that I witnessed a historical moment, and I'm gonna be proud to share this to my sons and grandsons. I wanted NU to win, and it happened.


A day at the training camp

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I've been a staunch opponent of some of the preposterous rules that were set in collegiate basketball recently like the NCAA's soon-to-be-implemented "no-import policy" and the UAAP's "Jerie Pingoy/Mikee Bartolome/Ben Mbala Rule". But I wonder, "What is it like to be part of a basketball varsity team?" I became a part of the varsity chess team when I was in fifth grade (and that was the first time I played the game), but I never became part of the basketball team (I tried, but I failed to make the cut).

In comes my gym trainer, who happens to be a member of the new coaching staff of the UPLB men's basketball team. He invited me to train with the team. At first, I was like, "My PE professor's not the coach anymore?" I did not ask my professor on what happened, but it seems like the academe is dead serious with hiring a coach.

OK. Fast forward to the training. My gym trainer was there, and so was his buddy, the team's other assistant coach (the head coach, according to my gym trainer, showed up in the next practice, but I did not show up; find out why later). It was the other assistant who led in the drills.
Because the GL7's at the Copeland Gym were already worn out, we had to use my ball
filled with signatories of Gilas players.
I watched how the former coach did the drills, but after seeing that of the new coaching staff, I was like, "This could be more rigorous." And indeed, it was like a "torture chamber." We did laterals, weaves, and even ball handling and defensive drills, but some were tweaked in such a way we will man up. After the usual weave drills, there was a difficult level in which you have to do the weave in at most five seconds.
The modified three-man weave where they have to finish the layup quickly.
Worst, if you fail to perfect the drills, you're gonna have to do two rounds of shuttle runs of four different lengths each. It was two-and-a-half hour of intense basketball (and we did not even play a scrimmage). But it was worth breaking a sweat. Unfortunately, I have to focus more on my thesis and my sportswriting job. But it was a fun experience.
PS: Thank you to Pregroe Gel for keeping my hair in place in spite of the long training. (My product review later on Stu Traveled.)


Vice Ganda imposes "no eating policy" after FEU loss

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Vice Ganda made a very wacky way to express his disappointment after FEU lost in Game 2 of the UAAP Finals against NU.

In a two-part Instagram video series on his account, Vice, an alumnus from FEU, put himself on a hunger strike and even told his housemates not to eat too.

In the first part, his housemate asked him to eat, but Vice threw the pillows at her and told her, "Walang kakain!"
Two hours later, the sequel came, and Vice was seen by his housemate eating. She reminded him of what he said a while ago.
Don't take the videos too seriously, though. We all know that Vice is a very good comedian, and he made the videos to make us laugh too loud.

He, however, personally watched the FEU-NU game and witnessed how the Bulldogs forced a rubber match next week in convincing fashion.

My report on Dugout Philippines can be seen here.

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