Flores proud to be back in old ground
Lervin Flores
Jun Mendoza, file

Flores proud to be back in old ground

John Bryan Ulanday (The Philippine Star) - December 2, 2020 - 12:00am

Inside the bubble

SMART CLARK GIGA CITY, Pampanga, Philippines — From a Great Dane to a Tropang Giga, TNT big man Lervin Flores surely has come a long way.

The bona fide “kabalen,” who once suited up for the Angeles University Foundation Great Danes, is proud to be playing in his former home school, now the site of the PBA bubble, in a TNT uniform.

“Sobrang proud and honored,” he told The STAR.

“Ang sarap maglaro sa itinuturing mong tahanan. Dati, dito lang ako nangarap makapag-PBA. Tapos ngayon, nandito na ako. Finals pa. Sobrang blessing sa akin,” he said.

A native of nearby Masantol, Pampanga, Flores played two years for the Great Danes in the PRISAA before suiting up for the Arellano Chiefs in the NCAA in 2016.

He made a name by winning the NCAA Slam Dunk crown and getting drafted as the ninth overall pick by Star (now Magnolia) in 2017. He also played for GlobalPort (now NorthPort) before being picked up by TNT this year.

Flores has seen limited time in the bubble so far but has displayed unwavering enthusiasm in supporting his teammates.

“Pag ginagamit ako, ginagawa ko talaga lahat. As a role player, pinu-push ko lang lagi yung teammates ko. Chini-cheer ko sila palagi lalo at finals na ito,” he added.

* * *

The strong partnership between coach Tim Cone and forward Joe Devance has been carried over from Alaska to San Mig Coffee and now Ginebra.

Devance considers it a great honor to be under the wings of the American coach as the 38-year-old player seeks a record-tying 11th PBA title.

It’s just half of what the 62-year-old mentor has accomplished in the PBA with his record 22 titles.

“I’m just thankful and blessed to be in this situation and to have a career that I’ve had. I’m thankful for coach Tim for sticking with me throughout these years,” he said.

LERVIN FLORES
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