Filipino-American guard Jordan Clarkson is optimistic of Gilas Pilipinas’ chances to perform well at the FIBA Olympic Qualifiers that will be held in July in Manila.
The winner of the 6-team tournament will play in the 2016 Olympics at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“All we got to do is go out there, fight, and compete. It’s not boxing. You ain’t getting hit in the face, so you go out there and you compete, leave it all on the floor, and anything can happen,” said Clarkson.
But the 23-year-old LA Lakers hooper won’t be able to suit up for Gilas Pilipinas because free agency will take place simultaneously as the Olympic Qualifiers.
Clarkson is a restricted free agent for the Los Angeles Lakers.
“A lot of those guys have my number and if they want to ask about a guy, anything, they could text me,” said Clarkson.
The former second round pick said he is disappointed that he can’t play for Gilas.
“I’ll be there for them as much as I can. You know I want to be there on the court, fighting with them, but it kinda sucks what happened and I can’t be there. But I’ll be there for them any way I can,” he said.
Clarkson also complimented Gilas Pilipinas guard Terrence Romeo. He said he was impressed with the former Far Eastern University standout when he watched the national team play at the William Jones Cup in Taiwan last year.
“He can score the ball, can put the ball on the ground. He’s got a great handle, so I’m looking forward to him playing in this qualifier and I feel like he’s one of the leaders on his team so it’s going to be good to see what he does," said Clarkson.
The former University of Missouri standout is expected to be in Manila until .