Chris Newsome, CJ Perez, and Calvin Oftana: A Golden Brotherhood in Filipino Basketball

October 16, 2023

In the heart of Filipino basketball, a story of camaraderie and resilience unfolds, epitomized by the bond shared between Chris Newsome, CJ Perez, and Calvin Oftana. This triumphant trio, integral parts of the Gilas Pilipinas squad, have etched their names into the annals of Philippine sports history, not merely through their medals but through the unbreakable bonds of friendship and shared dreams.

Their remarkable journey in 2023 began with the resounding victory at the 19th Asian Games, where their dedication to the game and their nation shone brightly. From the electrifying 3x3 gold in the Southeast Asian Games to their stint in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 pool, these athletes showcased unparalleled commitment. Chris Newsome, a star from Meralco, reminisced about their journey during a Thanksgiving party hosted by Yamaha Motor Philippines, Inc.

"It wasn't just me who was cut from the World Cup team," Newsome revealed. "Calvin also experienced that disappointment. CJ, on the other hand, was blessed to be part of that World Cup team." This revelation underlines the challenges they faced, the setbacks they endured, and the resilience that propelled them forward.

Their commitment to the national team program started long before the Asian Games glory. "There's a commitment from all of us that goes beyond the Asian Games; it dates back to April when we had a training camp for SEA Games," Newsome emphasized. The camaraderie formed during these rigorous training sessions became the bedrock of their success, transcending the boundaries of the basketball court.

As Newsome spoke about their shared experiences, he highlighted the profound significance of their victory. "We want you all to know that we're doing this for you, for our families, for our loved ones," he expressed passionately. "This is an experience we're going to remember for the rest of our lives."

In the world of sports, victories are often measured in medals, but the intangible moments shared in locker rooms and team accommodations are equally invaluable. For Newsome, Perez, and Oftana, these moments are etched into their memories, forming a tapestry of shared laughter, challenges, and triumphs.

The future of the Gilas team remains uncertain, with new challenges and opportunities on the horizon. Newsome acknowledged this uncertainty, stating, "We don't know if we're ever going to get another team together or if every single piece is going to be there." This uncertainty made their recent triumph all the more significant. "This was our last dance," Newsome reflected. "We really wanted to cherish that moment, and we were able to do something special together."

Their journey, marked by dedication, friendship, and an unwavering commitment to the Philippines, stands as a testament to the spirit of Filipino basketball. Beyond the gleaming medals, it is these stories of resilience and camaraderie that illuminate the true essence of their victory, making Chris Newsome, CJ Perez, and Calvin Oftana true ambassadors of Filipino basketball excellence.

Source Tiebreaker Times

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