No Al Jefferson in Terrific 12 due to dental infection

MACAU – Former NBA star Al Jefferson's keenly-awaited appearance in the Asia League Terrific 12 is a no-go.

One of the biggest draws in the invitational tournament, Jefferson will not see action for China's Xinjiang Flying Tigers after dealing with a dental infection a few days ago. 

Xinjiang badly missed the services of the 14-year NBA veteran as they fell out of semifinals contention following a 59-74 loss to the Ryukyu Golden Kings in Group C at the Studio City Event Center here on Wednesday, September 19. 

"He was supposed to be here earlier to get ready for the tournament. He had a health complication which brought him in later," Xinjiang head coach Brian Goorjian said, referring to the complication as a dental infection. 

"Then before he suits up, he has to have a physical, so as we were playing, he was having his physical." 

Jefferson arrived in Macau Wednesday morning and could play against Philippine bet iECO Green Warriors but since the Flying Tigers are already eliminated, Goorjian said he'd rather rest the big man. 

"I don't think we'll play him tomorrow. We got one game left but it's probably not a good idea. We'll play with what we got." 

Xinjiang and iECO duke it out on Thursday, September 20, at the same venue.

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.