JORDAN Clarkson said he was 'disappointed' not to be part of the Gilas Pilipinas team that will compete in the Fiba Asia Championship later this month, but said further effort to make the lineup at this late hour would not be 'fair' to the 12 players who made coach Tab Baldwin's list.
The Fil-American guard said he got the support of both his father Mike Clarkson and Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak on his desire to be part of the Gilas program not just in the coming Asian championships but also in the long term.
But with his Fiba eligibility and permission from the Lakers left hanging, Clarkson said the 12 players selected to play for the Philippines in the tournament serving as Asia's qualifier for the Olympic Games next year 'earned the right and any continued effort on my part would not be fair to the team.'
"I'm very disappointed I won't be able to play with Gilas during the Fiba Asia Championships," said Clarkson in a statement released to media outlets. "We can all agree, the 12 men selected to represent the Philippines have earned the right and any continued efforts on my part would not be fair to the team.
"I will cheer them onto gold."
However, Clarkson, the 42nd pick overall of the 2014 NBA draft who earned a pot in the All-Rookie Team, affirmed that he remained committed and is fact passionate abnout representing an entire country - something he shared to his dad upon his arrival from the Jones Cup in Taipei.
"My Dad told me to follow my heart," he said. "I spoke to Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak and he shared the same sentiments about representing an entire country and supported my decision either way."
"The Filipino Fans are some of the most passionate in the world and many of them are Laker's supporters. I want to sincerely thank all of the fans who sent me letters of encouragement during these last three months about Gilas."