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Ramirez: PH’s sports success a result of hard work, sacrifices of athletes, coaches

June 14, 2022 4:00 p.m.

THE OUTSTANDING success of Philippine sports in major competitions, highlighted by weighlifter Hidilyn Diaz’s historic gold in the Tokyo Olympics,  the last six years was not by chance or conjured out of thin air, stressed Philippine Sports Commission chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez on Tuesday. 

“These achievements were not done by magic. Hindi ito tsamba,” noted Ramirez in what he described as his ‘exit interview’ during a solo appearance in the first face-to-face Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum in over two years at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex administration building audio visual room in Manila. 

“Kung wala kang itinanim, wala ka rin aanihin,” added the PSC honcho of the hundreds of millions of pesos the government sports agency has poured into elite sports and national athletes that led to the country’s fruitful campaigns overseas.  

“I was blessed that we had the money when I came back as PSC chairman and knew the need of our national athletes since I stayed with them at the Philsports Complex dorms in Pasig,” said Ramirez in the session backed by San Miguel Corporation (SMC), MILO, PSC, Philippine Olympic Committee, Unilever, Amelie Hotel Manila, and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR).

He disclosed the PSC invested P600 million in elite sports at the start of his second term in 2016, P800 million in 2017, then over P1 billion in 2019 as the national athletes primed themselves for the country’s hosting of the 30th Southeast Asian Games. 

The fruits of that investments resulted in the country bagging four golds, two silvers and five bronzes in the highly-competitive 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia, recapturing the SEA Games overall crown in 2019 at home with 149 gold, 117 silver and 121 bronze medals, and its first gold medal in the Olympics in Tokyo last year courtesy of the heroics of Diaz. 

Counting the Olympic silver medals of boxers Carlo Paalam and Nesthy Petecio, and the bronze of fellow fighter Felix Eumir Marcial, the Tokyo Olympic edition was the best Philippine outing in the quadrennial Summer Games since Filipinos made their debut in the 1900 Paris Olympics. 

“These so-called golden years of Philippines was the result of the hard work and sacrifices of our athletes and coaches. And it was people’s money, taxpayer’s money that made it all possible,” Ramirez underscored.

“The PSC has not been remiss in supporting our Philippine delegations to overseas competitions. This has been very, very clear,” he said, adding that the feats were a “collaborative effort of the PSC, Philippine Olympic Committee, and National Sports Associations.”

To sustain the gains in Philippine sports in the next six years, Ramirez said the new leaders of the agency should learn how to adapt to the changing conditions 

“One of the most important pillars of management is adaptability. Our leaders need to be alert and adapt to the times. Hindi puwedeng patulog-tulog,” he said. 

“We have to provide money, provide proper support for our sports such as sports science and provide good governance by our leaders. You will not achieve this high level of performance in international competition without these provisions,” the PSC chief explained.

Ramirez said he was ready to step down at the end of the month after more than two decades of being associated with PSC, beginning as commissioner in 1998 under the administration of the late chairman Carlos Tuason. 

“I am ready to return to Davao but am willing to be an adviser and share my experience and knowhow with the incoming PSC leadership,” the 72-year-old Davao City native said.  

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NBA hosts 1st Iconic Shots Challenge in PH

July 4, 2022 1:41 p.m.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) hosted the first “NBA Iconic Shots Challenge” on Saturday, June 25 and Sunday, June 26 at the Mega Fashion Hall activity center, SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City, Philippines. 

The NBA Iconic Shots Challenge is an immersive basketball experience for fans to attempt select signature shots from the league’s landmark 75th Anniversary Season, which concluded with the Golden State Warriors winning their fourth NBA championship in eight years and seventh championship overall.  

Simulating an authentic NBA arena atmosphere, the challenge took place on a half-court in front of a virtual audience displayed on a curved LED panel. 

Each player had 60 seconds to score from five different spots on the court, ranging from four feet to 24 feet, and complete the shooting challenge in the following order: layup, floater, midrange jump shot and three-pointers from the wing and the top of the arc. 

Each made basket had a corresponding prize from a selection of premium partner items, NBA Store gift vouchers and official NBA merchandise. 

The on-ground activation will also feature a pop-up NBA Store and interactive booths from partners.

Mallgoers played through the NBA Iconic Shots Challenge, which allowed participants to test their shooting skills from five different locations on the court. 

The NBA Iconic Shots Challenge is supported by official partners AXA Philippines, Energen Champion and Gatorade and official media partners Cignal, Globe, Smart, and PLDT.  Official NBA merchandise are available through the NBA Store and NBAStore.com.ph, the official online NBA Store in the Philippines.

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MILO, DepEd celebrate kids’ success thru 1st-ever Palarong Pambahay virtual sports competition

Beloved nutritious beverage brand MILO® Philippines and the Department of Education (DepEd) celebrated the recent success of its inaugural MILO-DepEd Palarong Pambahay.

The joint effort was the first-of-its-kind inter-sport, inter-school virtual competition held on a nationwide scale.

The 2-day live broadcast saw more than 700 participating schools and featured over 2,000 aspiring student athletes who showcased their skills and competed with pride for themselves and their school in front of 1.5 million-plus online viewers.

“It is our great pleasure to partner with MILO® Philippines for the first-ever MILO-DepEd Palarong Pambahay competition.  Even though the pandemic has hindered most of our on-ground activities, our organization, as well as coaches, teachers, and parents, have worked tremendously hard to make this event a reality. This is quite a milestone and integral proof that nothing can stop the Filipino champion spirit and our winning culture of Bayanihan,” said DepEd Undersecretary Tonisito M.C. Umali, Esq.

This groundbreaking online sports event opened doors for young athletes who showed their determination as they trained and competed from their homes, as well as their parent coaches who helped guide them along the way to overcome the many challenges of staying indoors.

“Nakita natin ang pagpupursige ng mga atleta at mga magulang na sumali sa Palarong Pambahay, dahil hindi nila hinayaang maging hadlang ang pandemya,” said Carlo Sampan, MILO® Sports Executive.

MILO-DepEd Palarong Pambahay is just the latest of many creative and innovative programs now available from MILO® Philippines designed to provide kids with an outlet to stay physically active and teach them the important values learned from sports such as discipline, respect, and determination.

“Taekwondo helps me build my self-confidence so that I can attain success through hard-work and determination,” said Justin Apura who hails from the University of San Agustin, Iloilo. Apura won gold in Taekwondo and has been competing in local and international competitions since he was 6 years old.

Jennie Villanueva, whose son Marvi Marcelo competed in Athletics, also shared: “Andun yung pag-strive niya na gawin niya yung best niya sa isang bagay para kahit hindi siya manalo, alam niyang nagawa niya yung best niya.”

Faced with a new reality and challenges, MILO® Philippines and DepEd has proven to parents across the country that there are opportunities to adapt and continue their child’s Champion journey at home.

As schools and sports venues start to open up again, MILO® Philippines is excited to welcome back kids to continue to their Champion journeys in the upcoming MILO® Summer Sports Clinics. For more details on how to join, please visit the official MILO® Philippines website.

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Niantic, NBA, NBPA team up for NBA All-World

June 29, 2022 7:31 p.m.

NEW YORK — Niantic announced a partnership with the National Basketball Association and the National Basketball Players Association to create an original augmented reality mobile game: NBA All-World. 

NBA All-World is a first-of-its-kind game that will place NBA fans into the real-world metaverse.  

NBA All-World is a free-to-play officially licensed geolocation basketball game where players can find, challenge, and compete against today’s NBA ballers in their neighborhoods, then recruit them to their team before proving themselves on the court.  

“NBA All-World represents an industry first in sports games, as an original, real-world AR game that will appeal to casual and core NBA fans alike,” said Marcus Matthews, Senior Producer at Niantic. 

“We’re creating and designing a game that empowers players to represent where they’re from and showcase the culture of their neighborhood.” 

“Through our partnership with Niantic, NBA All-World will provide fans across the globe the opportunity to fully immerse themselves into the energy and excitement of the NBA,” said Matt Holt, Head of Consumer Products at the NBA. 

“Evident in the name of the game itself, we look forward to engaging with our fans around the world through this captivating experience.” 

“NBA-All World gives us the opportunity to bring NBA players into Niantic’s real-world metaverse, opening up paths for fans to interact with them in a new way,” said Josh Goodstadt, EVP of Licensing for THINK450, the innovation engine of the NBPA.

“Niantic has proven experience building games that encourage engagement in local communities, and having our players integrated into NBA All-World adds to that immersion.” 

Additionally, NBA All-World will embrace the fashion of the NBA, with users having the ability to outfit players in the game with custom apparel.  

Players can sign-up to be notified when NBA All-World is available in their country by visiting NBAAll-World.com. 

Those who sign up will be able to experience an exclusive All-World AR web experience and be the first to be notified about securing their codename for global launch.

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