UP Maroons plan to hold training camp in China, and probably the U.S.
MANILA, Philippines – UP Fighting Maroons head coach Bo Perasol said on Wednesday, April 4, that his team plans to hold training camp in preparation for the 2018 UAAP men’s basketball season in China this coming June.
Perasol, who is about to enter his 3rd season calling the shots for UP’s men’s basketball team, told Rappler in an exclusive interview that the particulars are being worked on for the trip to get the green light.
“This coming June, meron kaming training camp, parang ganyan. Dito lang 'yun sa Asia,” said the head coach, who later specified that his team will visit the most populated country in the world.
(This coming June, we have a training camp, something like that. It will be just here in Asia.)
“We’re just working out the details. Pero (but) we’ll be having that, details nalang ang kailangan (we just need the details).”
Ahead of their Season 80 campaign last year, UP’s men’s basketball team held its training camp in Las Vegas. The Maroons worked out at Impact Basketball, where the boys improved their skills and conditioning. Some of the players even ran into notable NBA names, like Oklahoma City Thunder forward Carmelo Anthony.
Although not yet a done deal, Perasol said that he hoped the team can again go to the United States in order to better prepare for Season 81.
“We’re always trying to seek help from our alumni and the community. So kung aabutin pa nang amin budget (if our budget permits it), we’re hoping also to go back to the US for some games and some training also.”
A return to America this year, however, doesn’t confirm a return to Impact Basketball.
“Not necessarily in Las Vegas,” explained Perasol. “Probably some in LA, or even in Florida. We’re looking into that also.”
Besides the international trips, UP also plans to participate in various tournaments over the coming months. One is the annual FilOil preseason competition, which should start in April and would give Maroons fans their first look at this season’s roster.
In addition, there are also two competitions on the horizon for the Fighting Maroons.
“April and May, halos nag sabay-sabay itong Filoil and some other tournaments dito sa Metro Manila.”
(In April and May, the Filoil tournament and some other tournaments are taking place at the same time.)
“We cannot go anywhere this April and May,” said the head coach, “kasi punong-puno ang games dito sa (because there are a bunch of games here in) Metro Manila.”
UP is scheduled to participate in this year’s BBI (Breakdown Basketball Invitationals) to be held at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center starting on April 13. The Maroons will be part of the under-25 men’s division, along with Ateneo, Mapua, National University, and St. Claire, according to PhilStar.
Perasol also said they would join the City Hoops Manila Summer Classic that would take place in Greenhills, San Juan.
With a handful of games set to be played over the next few weeks, Perasol is leaning towards dividing his pool of players into two teams.
“‘Yan na yung mga tune-ups namin. Tuloy-tuloy ‘yan. In fact, sabay-sabay ‘yan. That’s why what I’m planning to do is to divide my team into two para may exposure ‘yung mga seldom-used ko na mga players,” he said.
(Those are our tune-ups. It will be consecutive. In fact, it will even take place at the same time. That’s why what I’m planning is to divide my team into two so that my seldom-used players also get exposure.)
Perasol also added that he planned to finish their tune-up games against local college teams before July. By then, explained the veteran coach, NCAA clubs will already be playing in their own league and UAAP teams will barely be seeing action against the opponents they will face in the official season just two months later.
Note: This is the first of two articles from Rappler’s interview with Perasol.