Photos by Peter Baltazar
MANILA, Philippines – Just a few weeks ago, Globe Telecommunications announced their exclusive multi-year partnership with the National Basketball Association, and it didn’t take time for them to bring in their first NBA guest in the name of Richard “Rip” Hamilton.
Hamilton, who is more popular during his playing years with the Detroit Pistons and being part of the 2004 championship team, is on a three-day trip in Manila. One of the stops was to drop by Ormoc through the NBA Cares program but the typhoon scare of “Ruby” prevented him to do so. Instead, he spent time with the kids of Barangay Buayang Bato in Mandaluyong City.
In just a few days stay in Manila, Rip already felt at home through the hospitality of the Filipinos and has been enjoying his trip so far.
“I love it. I love the Filipinos. People treated me like an adopted son. The trip for me has always been exciting,” Hamilton said.
Rip was known for his unstoppable midrange shots, and he took the time to teach the children of Barangay Buayang Bato the trick in getting that killer jumper.
A total of 50 kids participated in the NBA Cares program, and Rip fell in love with the kids as much as the kids also fell in love with the warm personality of the former NBA champion.
“It has been great. It has been an experience teachng them the game of basketball and they all look very excited,” said Hamilton.
Hamilton, who retired just last year, will now have more time to give back to the community and maximize his presence through the NBA Cares program.
"I love the NBA Cares because they believe in a lot of beliefs I have myself. I started my own foundation when I first got into the league, to give kids a vision," Hamilton said.
"To me it's a great matter, so I told them if there's anything I can do, get out and be around kids and different communities and help them out, I'm all for it.
About the Author: Ernest Hernandez is a regular contributor for NBA Philippines and Philstar.com. He also hosts a sports program named “Sports On-Air” that can be heard at DZEC 1062 khz every Sunday from 7-8pm.
Richard Hamilton loves the Philippine's crispy pata (Video by Yas Salanga/NBA.com Philippines)