GILAS Pilipinas had another curious member during Monday's training session.
Rayl Jacob, Raymond Almazan's two-year-old son, gamely participated in the national team's practice at the Meralco Gym, shooting hoops and joining dad and his teammates in the stretching exercises.
Some of the Gilas staffers soon gravitated to the Almazan tot, who, at an early age, has showed a keen interest in the sport that dad loves.
That only brings a smile to the Meralco center's face.
"Sobrang saya ko kasi bilang daddy, nakikita ko na at his young age na mahilig na siya sa basketball," said Almazan, who constantly brought his son to his games ever from the time Jacob was three months old.
But it's not just the games. The Almazans also spend time together in the team practices whenever he can, from his days with Rain or Shine to now at Meralco.
"Lagi ko siyang sinasama. Dinadala na namin sa games at nakikitaas din sita ng kamay pag warmups, nakikisali siya sa stretching," he said.
That explains Jacob's deep appreciation of the sport as well as his fondness for his small blue Gilas jersey.
"Every time na matutulog siya, gusto niya naka-jersey siya ng Gilas. May pantulog siya, tapos naka-doble ito. Kahit na pawis na pawis na siya, ayaw niyang ipahubad," Raymond said with a laugh.
While Jacob embracing basketball brings a lot of happiness to dad Raymond, the elder Almazan said that he'll always be supportive of whatever path his son may take in the future.
"Sobrang happy dad ko lang. Syempre, player ako at gusto ko siyang sumunod sa yapak ko," he said. "Pero supportive father lang naman ako. Kung anong gusto niya na makakapagpasaya sa kanya, suporta lang ako sa kanya."