PBA 3x3

Cardona grateful for PBA 3×3 shot despite past off-court troubles

Delfin Dioquino
Cardona grateful for PBA 3×3 shot despite past off-court troubles

Mac Cardona of the Zamboanga Valientes. PBA Images

PBA Images

Mac Cardona returns to the PBA for the first time since 2017 after a series of off-court troubles derailed his basketball career

Welcome back, “Captain Hook.”

Mac Cardona said he is grateful to be given another chance to return to the PBA despite his past off-court troubles as he reinforces the Zamboanga Valientes in the inaugural 3×3 season.

Zamboanga is one of the three guest squads which joined the 13-team field.

“I’m very thankful and blessed that despite everything that happened in my life, I’m still here,” he said in a mix of Filipino and English. “I’m really happy to be back in the PBA even if it is just in 3×3.”

“The PBA is the PBA,” Cardona added.

A former PBA Best Player of the Conference and Finals MVP, Cardona played for more than a decade in the league – a career that included stops at Talk ‘N Text, Meralco, and Air21.

He last suited up for GlobalPort – now NorthPort – in 2017.

Cardona, however, got embroiled in controversy in 2018 when he landed in jail for stabbing his former partner.

The 40-year-old found himself arrested again in March for the crime of serious physical injuries.

Eyeing a basketball comeback, Cardona said he sought the help of Valientes team owner and old friend Junie Navarro, who gave him a roster spot in the VisMin Super Cup.

Zamboanga entrusted Cardona anew by including him in its lineup for the PBA 3×3, where he teams up with JR Cawaling, Kyle Neypes, and Gino Jumao-as.

“Thank you to the Zamboanga Valientes for giving me the opportunity to play here, even if it is only in 3×3,” Cardona said.

“As long as I’m doing something, I’m already happy.” – Rappler.com