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Post-Last Dance

Michael Jordan in the eyes of young Cesafi cagers

By: Gerard Vincent Francisco - CDN Digital | May 21,2020 - 02:31 PM

(From Left to Right) Basketball legend Micheal Jordan in one of his dunks during the 1988 slam dunk contes; LA Casinillo of Ateneo, Santos Go of USJ-R; and Samuel Melicor of UV.

Cebu City, Philippines – For basketball players and fans who grew up watching Micheal Jordan during his prime in the 80s and the 90s, the former Chicago Bull star is an inspiration, a hero, even considered a basketball god by many.

That’s expected. After all, the man many claim to be the greatest of all time changed the game with his style of basketball, and led his Chicago Bulls to six championships (two three-peats) in convincing (all in six games, 4-2) fashion.

From his no-nonsense demeanor to his passion for perfection, Jordan made an impact in the sport of basketball that brought the game to where it is now.

But how about the young cagers who only watched Jordan’s greatness through videos or through Netflix’s recent hit documentary series “The Last Dance” that chronicles the legend’s last championship run with the Bulls in 1998?

Did these kids, who grew up idolizing equally basketball greats such as Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Steph Curry, among others, feel the same impact “His Airness” brought to older basketball players after completing the 10-part documentary series?

Ateneo de Cebu’s LA Casinillo, the Season 19 high school season MVP in Cebu’s Cesafi league, believes he felt the   motivation to strive harder after completing the series.

“I thought that the series could be platform for aspiring basketball players to find motivation when they are are at the point of giving up, because I’m sure what those players are going through, Michael Jordan has faced worse,” Casinillo told CDN Digital through a Facebook message.

“He inspired me through his work ethic and his attitude of never giving up until he gets what he wants, and that’s winning,” Casinillo added.

Santos Go, one of the key players from the University of San Jose-Recoletos Baby Jaguars, also highlighted Jordan’s mindset, saying this was Jordan’s key to dominating the hardcourt every single game.

And this is what he wants to emulate.

“It teaches me to strive harder, not settle for less and double our effort in order to improve our talents,” said Go.

“Iyang impact sa aka pagduwa kay di mawagtangan ug paglaom kung unsa man ka bati ang ato ma agian,” he added.

(His impact to my playing is not losing hope, no matter what happens.)

University of the Visayas Baby Lancers team captain Samuel Melicor also said he could somehow relate to the show, talking about how hard he worked to get his chance to play in the collegiate level.

“In his sophomore year, he was only 5’11 and wala siya nadala sa team, mao to wala siya nagpadala. He really worked hard, ug iya nalang to gihimo og motivation para makusug siya,” Melicor told CDN Digital.

(In his sophomore year, he was only 5’11 and he didn’t make it to the team, so he didn’t give up. He really worked hard, and he used it as a motivation so that he will be stronger.)

Melicor also had an interesting thought about how Jordan made an impact on the sport worldwide, even during a time when there was still no social media to help someone go viral.

“Gibag- o ni Michael Jordan ang nawng sa basketball and sports, uban sa iyang labing maayo nga kahanas sa atletiko ug kusug alang sa pagmamaligya og pagendorse,” he said.

(He changed basketball and sport with his athleticism and initiative in selling and endorsing.) /bmjo

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