HIGH school star Kobe Paras' decision to leave La Salle Greenhills and play high school ball in the US has the blessings of top De La Salle patron Eduardo 'Danding' Cojuangco, and he remains committed to the Green Archers should he decide to come back.
This was bared by the juniors star's dad Benjie, who said they sought permission from Cojuangco even before the high-leaping world 3x3 slam dunk champion accepted a basketball scholarship from Cathedral High School in Los Angeles, California, as reported by the Philippine Star.
“Of course, naka-usap ko mismo si Boss Danding. Ibinigay naman niya agad yung blessing niya sa amin. Of course, sa school din,” the elder Paras said.
They Said It!
“Of course, naka-usap ko mismo si Boss Danding (Cojuangco). Ibinigay naman niya agad yung blessing niya sa amin." - Kobe Paras' father Benjie
Kobe Paras has committed to play for the Green Archers in the UAAP before he decided to take his high-wire act to the US. But his dad vowed they will abide by the commitment they gave to Cojuangco himself should his son decide to return to the country.
“As of now syempre, priority pa rin niya yun (commitment with La Salle). Syempre si Boss Danding naman kasi yung nagpapa-aral sa kanila sa high school … silang magkapatid (ni Andre), syempre, priority pa rin namin ang La Salle,” said Paras.
The only rookie-MVP in PBA history, the elder Paras also said the priority at the moment is for Kobe to finish his high school education in the US, but added there are no concrete plans beyond that.
“As of now kasi ang target ko lang is makatapos siya ng high school and he’ll take it from there,” said the elder Paras, of his son who flew to the US last week.
“Basta, hintayin ko muna siya makatapos ng high school saka na tayo magde-decide dun,” he added.
La Salle coach Juno Sauler, meanwhile, told Spin.ph that "La Salle is willing to wait" for Kobe but made it clear the school won't stand in the way of the La Salle Greenhills star reaching new heights in his career.
“I am not saddened (by the development). I am happy for his career,” said the soft-spoken coach. “It’s good for him if he can find a career in the States, magkakaroon siya ng mas magandang exposure. Then NCAA Division I teams can see him.”
The recently crowned UAAP champion coach also bared that the La Salle organization will never hinder any student from achieving bigger dreams.
“If he goes there, choice niya yun at ng pamilya niya. Hindi namin siya pipigilan,” said Sauler. “Nasa kanya na yun kung ituloy niya. We will not hold him back. Basta payo ko lang, he should be very open to learning from coaches in the US. Made-develop talent niya.”