From all across the Philippines they came, from different provinces, backgrounds, dialects, and creeds. But no matter where they hailed from or what they spoke, be it English, Filipino, Hiligaynon, Cebuano, or Bicolano they all had a language that was common: basketball.
According to Coach Josephine Botor of Bicol, there was no magic formula to having people of different walks of life come together: “No matter how they choose to interpret it, we all understand each other – it’s all the same…in the end, we all speak the same language.”
That ability to look beyond class and geography for the love of the game has been present in each and every one of the over 300,000 athletes that have passed through the Jr. NBA and WNBA program over the last nine years.
The All-Stars from the 2016 camps are now scheduled to attend a culminating activity in China later this year, where they will meet and train with their counterparts from other Asian Jr. NBA and WNBA programs. Last year’s edition saw participants from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam take part. And, just as Coach Botor said, when it came to basketball and the love of the game, nobody needed a translator.