SMART CLARK GIGA CITY – Terrafirma hopes to give one of the Philippines’ grand old men of basketball a belated birthday gift in the second half of its campaign in the PBA Philippine Cup bubble.
The Dyip are looking to finally break into the win column when they battle Phoenix Super LPG on Tuesday, two days after team manager and legendary coach Joe Lipa celebrated his 77th birthday.
Terrafirma is the only team without a win heading to its 1 p.m. encounter with the Fuel Masters at the Angeles University Foundation gym.
Lipa, the former national men’s team coach and the only man to give University of the Philippines a UAAP varsity basketball championship, had a quiet birthday celebration away from the bubble last Nov. 1 in the company of assistant team manager Doc. Ivy Bautista and assistant coach Emerson Colina.
But Lipa said he hasn’t missed a beat watching the Dyip live on TV during their games, and would even try to dissect plays with other Terrafirma officials.
He believes the Dyip’s young core of CJ Perez, Roosevelt Adams, Rashawn McCarthy, Glenn Khobuntin, Aldrech Ramos, Reden Celda, Andreas Cahilig, among others, will eventually develop into a cohesive unit and get their acts together.
“I think we will improve as time goes by,” said Lipa, one of the few old guards to stay long enough to make the transition to modern basketball.
Lipa, a five-time UAAP commissioner and three-time with the NCAA in the same capacity, said he remains updated with what’s happening in the world of basketball.
“Siyempre, love natin yan (basketball),” he added.