FHM was present during the Nike Rise Legacy Night this past weekend, which pitted some of local basketball's up-and coming-stars (Team Destiny) against no less than retired and active PBA legends (Team Legacy). In short, a Pinoy hoops aficionado's dream game.
Team Legacy had Allan Caidic, Alvin Patrimonio, Alvin Teng, Benjie Paras, Bong Ravena, Olsen Racela, Mike Cortez, Mark Cardona, Renren Ritualo, Willie Miller, and James Yap for their veteran but still very much capable lineup. Team Destiny, on the other hand, had the fresh legs of Nico Salva, Jared Dillinger, LA Tenorio, Mark Barroca, RR Garcia, Jeff Chan, Greg Slaughter, Jeron Teng, Thirdy Ravena, Kobe Paras, and Gabe Norwood (as coach). Just thinking of who guards who made us gush...
In the end, the young guns proved too much for the old reliables, prevailing with a score of 121-109. Aside from all the on-court action, what made the dream matchup truly a must-watch were a number of interesting, entertaining storylines like...
A GLIMPSE OF THE GOOD OL' ATENEO-LA SALLE RIVALRY
Team Destiny's Blue Eagle combo of Tenorio, Slaughter, Salva, and Thirdy going up against Team Legacy's Green Archery of Cortez, Cardona, and Ritualo was definitely reminiscent of the celebrated UAAP rivalry's golden days.
A TREAT FROM THE THREE-POINT THREATS
Aside from an epic Slaughter and Alvin Teng in-game three-pointer exchange, the event had a separate three-point contest during halftime. Team Legacy's Caidic (79 points, anyone?), Yap, and Ritualo went up against Team Destiny's Chan, Garcia, and Nike Rise participant Kherlie Pino, respectively. The result? Experience has the upper hand against potential, it appears.
A SPECTACULAR DUNK FEST
It wouldn't be an exhibition game without the mandatory dunk-off, right? Featuring the FIBA 3x3 U18 World Championships Slam Dunk champion, UCLA-commit Kobe, and Thirdy, one of college basketball's most electrifying dunkers, the festivities served up some really mean rim-rattlers.
Surprisingly, Benjie "The Tower of Power" Paras also proved he still has hops, making a two-handed jam with a little lift help from fellow legend Caidic.
A HEATED FAMILY AFFAIR
The star-studded pickup game also proved to be the ultimate father-and-son bonding experience. Benjie and Kobe somewhat anchored each of their team's offense; the younger Paras' 22 points had more highlights, but in the end, pops won their matchup with his game-high 28 points.
Bong and Thirdy also had an informal steals contest, garnering three and four swipes, respectively. Too bad Kiefer wasn't present to join the fun.
The older Teng hasn't lost his competitive fire, with the "Robocop," at one sequence, abusing his son Jeron in the post. Poor Jeron didn't stand a chance.
SIMPLY, A DAMN GOOD TIME
The exhibition game looked like a passing-of-the-torch-kind of event, but also served as a reminder of the country's rich basketball history and the bright future of Philippine hoops. #PUSO!