CHANGSHA, China – Not lost on Hong Kong star player Duncan Reid is the deep bench possessed by Gilas Pilipinas.
Reid saw this play out in front of him as the Philippine team pounded Hong Kong without let-up on the way to an empatic 101-50 victory on Thursday morning.
In the long run, Reid acknowledged the bench factor would definitely work to Gilas’ advantage as it goes deep in the Fiba Asia Men’s Championship here.
“Their continuity, to tell you the truth,” said the 26-year-old Reid when asked what he finds impressive with this third batch of Gilas Pilipinas under coach Tab Baldwin.
“Often with other teams we played like Korea and China, you’ll find there’s a big drop off between the starters and bench. But I found what coach Baldwin was able to do, he brings in substitute, but there’s not really a big drop off. That continuity was very good.”
Baldwin did rest starters Andray Blatche, Jason Castro, Dondon Hontiveros, and Ranidel De Ocampo as Gilas blew the game apart against Hong Kong and let back-ups Sonny Thoss, JC Intal, Calvin Abueva, and Terrence Romeo do the mop-up operation.
Intal’s basket to end the game allowed the team to reach the century mark and gave it that huge 51-point cushion.
Reid, whose Hong Kong team was cheered on by a small Chinese crowd at the Changsha Socal Work Colleges here, was likewise amazed at the way Gilas played the press and in its ability to adjust to the zone less than 24 hours after struggling to make its shots in an upset at the hands of Palestine.
“They struggled against the zone a little bit (against Palestine), and that’s what we tried to do. But they hit shots, hit a lot of shots. A lot of guys hit a lot of threes against us, “ said the Hong Kong center.
“They moved the ball better (this time) and they were a lot more aggressive attacking our zone. They really made us pay hitting a lot of tough shots.”