GILAS Pilipinas coach Tab Baldwin welcomed the prospect of having Paul Lee at his disposal in the national pool from where the team for the Fiba Asia Championship will come from.
The national coach spoke a day after Spin.ph reported that the Rain or Shine star guard could be made available for national duty after team management signified its willingness to release him.
Baldwin, however, said he has yet to know himself of the availability of Lee, who was not included in the 16-man pool made available by the PBA to the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP).
“I haven’t spoken with Rain or Shine management, so I can’t comment,” Baldwin said after practice on Thursday morning. “I’m not a guy that comments on second-hand information.”
But asked of the idea of having Lee, who shone with Gilas in the 2014 Fiba World Cup and Asian Games, available for selection, Baldwin gave a positive response.
“I’d love to have to Paul Lee,” the American-Kiwi mentor said. “If Paul Lee walked in the door right now, I’d be happy.”
“But the door won’t stay open forever,” he was quick to add.
Baldwin, though, said he has yet to impose a specific deadline on when he would close the door on those standouts who have yet to show up for practice.
Nevertheless, Baldwin indicated he will make do with the current players he has in his pool if Lee and the rest can’t make it.
“We will work hard to become a really good basketball team and I believe we can do that.”