NOT a few noticed that Andray Blatche was on the heavy side when he reported for his first practice with Gilas Pilipinas on Monday night ahead of the Fiba Asia men's championship.
The naturalized Filipino made no effort to hide the extra poundage, but assured all he needs is the whole month of August to get back in shape.
“I just need this month of August and I’d be ready. That’s all I need,” the former Brooklyn Net said at the end of his first practice with Gilas Pilipinas on Monday at the Meralco Gym.
The extra weight was understandable considering Blatche played his last game for the Xinjiang Tigers last February 1, but the naturalized player said he played a lot of pick-up basketball in the US during the offseason of the Chinese Basketball Association.
Blatche said he's glad to be back.
“It feels great period being in organized sports. Playing for something that means something,” said Blatche, who played for Gilas in last year's Fiba World Cup in Spain.
The former NBA player said he is looking forward to his second stint with Gilas in an overseas tournament - and his first in the Fiba-Asia tournament serving as a qualifier for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
“I miss my teammates, my coaches, and those people that I met along the way. This is my send time back here and all the people are great.” Blatche said.