SINGAPORE — The NBA Finals craze has also hit the Philippine delegation in the 28th Southeast Asian Games here.
A number of Filipino athletes admitted catching a glimpse of the action in Game One of the NBA Finals won by the Golden State Warriors over the Cleveland Cavaliers in overtime, 108-100, the morning of the opening ceremony on Friday.
“Sayang eh,” said marathoner Eduardo Buenavista, a Cavaliers fan. “Idol ko si LeBron. Sayang hindi niya na-shoot (noong fourth quarter).”
Buenavista said members of the national athletics team watched Game One of the finals from their respective rooms.
“Nanood kami lahat,” said Buenavista, who admitted some of his teammates had bets among themselves for fun.
Other athletes, however, were not as fortunate to watch the thrilling match as they couldn’t find the channel airing the NBA games in this country where football is the most popular sport.
“Hinahanap namin pero hindi namin mahanap,” said pool artist Rubilen Amit, a Warriors fan.
Triathlon Association of the Philippines president Tom Carrasco also failed to watch Game One but said he learned about the result through messages from his friends back home via Viber.
The same goes for Amit.
“May kaibigan akong nagsabi through Viber na nanalo ang Warriors,” said the jubilant Amit.
Women's volleyball coach Roger Gorayeb said he didn't watch Game One because the team held practices at the same time. He, however, said he is not interested to watch the NBA Finals series at all.