Last week, I wrote about a dream lineup having former 3×3 representatives suit up once more for the tournament’s World Cup. That would have been a pretty formidable lineup, but it’s probably not as explosive as the one that’s featured today.
Terrence Romeo and Calvin Abueva in the backcourt would bring the show – they definitely did when they represented two different Manila teams back in 2014 – but their prowess on offense combined can’t eclipse two of the league’s best scorers at the guard spots.
This team’s frontcourt, meanwhile, would have loved to bring down the roof with their energy and athleticism.
Jayson Castro (guard, TNT KaTropa)
If he can dominate full-court games while logging heavy minutes, then the 3×3 playground would be a piece of cake for the best point guard in Asia. Castro’s large energy reserve will enable him to run circles around defenders, who’ll be too exhausted trying to stop him at the rim. His first step will also leave defenders biting his dust. Oh, have I mentioned that ‘The Blur’ can light it up from literally anywhere in the half court? (You probably know that already.)
Paul Lee (guard, Magnolia Hotshots)
The Leethal Weapon’s up there among the best isolation ballers in the league. His wide arsenal gives him a range of ways to finish on offense; he could clear out everyone and pull up right at his opponent’s faces or go hard at them and take them to the rim, where his upper body strength’s enough to help him score at ease. Like his backcourt buddy here, he’ll keep teams on their heels and toes trying to anticipate their next move – a task which they’ll most likely fail.
Chris Newsome (forward, Meralco Bolts)
Versatility is key in 3×3 games, and Newsome brings just that. The former Ateneo Blue Eagle gives his team different looks on offense; he could take it to the hole and slam it, knock it down well from mid-range and from downtown or facilitate for his teammates. On defense, he could cover guards, forwards and bigs with his length and physicality. He’s been an all-around beast for the Bolts this season, and there would have been no doubt that he could bring this same energy to a 3×3 team.
Japeth Aguilar (center, Barangay Ginebra Kings)
Japeth’s quick and long, which would bode well for the team in this tournament. Speed dictates the pace of the play, after all. He can bother opposing rim attackers or stick with them if they take Aguilar to the perimeter. On offense, he’s improved quite a bit on the post and he can knock down jumpers with ease. Pair his skills with the attraction that the iso kings would be getting, and this guy would feast.
(photos from PBA.ph)