Mon. May 27th, 2024
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson Jordan TNT basketball Fiba World Cup

FILE – Former TNT import Rondae Hollis-Jefferson playing with Jordan national team. –JBF PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines-Rondae Hollis-Jefferson said the offer to become the naturalized player of Jordan in the Fiba World Cup was an opportunity he didn’t want to pass, given the possibilities that he could have.

“They talked to me about the Olympics, they talked to me about the World Cup,” Hollis-Jefferson said before a pair of journalists on Friday before Jordan’s practice at Ninoy Aquino Stadium. “And when they told me that it was in the Philippines, I was like ‘Yeah, let’s do it.’”

Hollis-Jefferson made a surprise early return to the country, but not to reinforce the TNT Tropang Giga squad that he led to the PBA Governors’ Cup title, but to represent Jordan for international basketball’s biggest spectacle.

The process was completed last July as Jordan hopes to put up a strong showing in a tough Group C bracket that includes the United States, Greece and New Zealand.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson lifts the 2023 PBA Governors' Cup trophy. –Marlo Cueto/INQUIRER.net

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson lifts the 2023 PBA Governors’ Cup trophy. –Marlo Cueto/INQUIRER.net

“It means a lot,” Hollis-Jefferson said. “It’s an honor to represent a country and in a stage like this, and be able to [have a chance to] do my all, show the world what I can do.”

The World Cup came four months after Hollis-Jefferson put up a memorable showing in the PBA’s season-ending conference which saw the Tropang Giga defeating Barangay Ginebra in six games.

He was also named the Governors’ Cup Best Import after edging out naturalized Filipino Justin Brownlee of Ginebra.

Jordan opens its campaign on Saturday against Greece as the runner-up of the 2022 Asia Cup will aim to secure a Paris Olympics berth as the best Asian team.

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