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    Dondon Hontiveros hints at playing on after possible last game with Aces: 'Physically, I feel good'

    Sep 20, 2017
    Tony dela Cruz and Dondon Hontiveros share laughs in their last interviews as members of the Aces. Jerome Ascano

    ANTIPOLO City - Dondon Hontiveros may have played his final game for Alaska, but implied he's not about ready to close the door on his decorated PBA career.

    The 40-year-old pride of Cebu thinks that physically, he's still capable of playing in Asia's first ever play-for-pay league, be it with the Aces or any other team.

    "Di rin natin masabi. Physically, I feel good about myself. I'll try to always get in shape," said Hontiveros after Alaska played its final game in the Governors Cup Wednesday night, a 112-82 loss to Rain or Shine at the Ynares Center here.

    "Statistically, hindi siguro (right now)," he said in between laughs, noting how he shot just 1-of-8 from the field and finished with two points, four rebounds, and a steal in 21 minutes of play in his final stint as an Ace.

    Hontiveros' one-year extension deal with the team expires this October and learned Alaska management no longer offered him a new contract. The team even prepared a tribute for him when Alaska played defending champion Barangay Ginebra in his native province of Cebu last month.


      But Hontiveros, a three-time champion and 13-time All-Star, isn't taking things against the Aces. He said he'll forever be grateful for the wonderful four seasons he played for the team, where he won his last championship in the 2013 Commissioner's Cup.

      He even thanked Alaska for entrusting him to hold various basketball camps in the provinces during his stint with the team, something the 'Cebuano Hotshot' hopes he'll continue to do in the future.

      Continue reading below ↓

      What if other teams are interested to still get his services?

      "Right now, actually hindi ko pa alam. Basta I'm just enjoying the moment with my teammates," said Hontiveros during the interview where he sat beside retiring teammate Tony Dela Cruz.

      Hontiveros lamented though failing to win an all-Filipino crown in his 17-year stint in the league, an opportunity that he said would have been the perfect timing for him to walk away.

      Nonetheless, he'll forever cherish the contract extension Alaska gave to him last year to have another shot at achieving that dream.

      "Sabi nga ni coach (Alex Compton), we may no longer be here, but the relationship will always remain intact," said Hontiveros, who was the direct hire of Tanduay in 2000 straight from the defunct Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA).

      "Marami kaming natutunan dito. And it's a great group of guys to be with."

      Aside from Alaska and Tanduay, Hontiveros, a former three-point contest champion and 2nd Mythical team member, Hontiveros also suited up for Air21 and San Miguel, where he played for the longest time in his career and won two championships.

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      Tony dela Cruz and Dondon Hontiveros share laughs in their last interviews as members of the Aces. Jerome Ascano
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