Tuesday, November 24, 2009

L.A. Clippers Embrace Filipino Heritage Night together with the only Filipino NBA Player

By Jay Fermin (Frontliners Media Group)

Staples Center, Los Angeles – The Holidays are upon us and it is time once again for family and community to slow down, celebrate, remember the culture that binds all of us and maybe, just maybe, have it all in a great basketball game! For the first time in Los Angeles NBA history, the Clippers will host “Filipino Hoops and Heritage Night” which will be held at Staples Center on December 5, 2009 in their game against the Indiana Pacers at the Staples Center at 7:30 p.m.

The only Filipino NBA player Raymond Townsend (Golden State Warriors / Indiana Pacers) spoke to members of the media stating that this is a historic event that will show the Filipino heritage thru the NBA and is an opportunity for Filipinos to support their NBA team as well while promoting our youth to follow their dreams. The theme of Filipino Hoops and Heritage Night is “Follow Your Dreams.” He recounted emotionally how his mother related to him about the Filipino heart – if the cause is right, the Filipino heart will beat it.

Townsend declares that he is saddened by the recent floods in the Philippines.” I still have family in Banaue Street in Quezon City and in Taal”, he declares. Born to a Filipino mother from Batangas, and an American father, he grew up in San Jose, California. Townsend played for UCLA for four seasons under the famous UCLA coach John Wooden, and was a member of the 1975 UCLA Basketball National Champions. He was selected in the first round of the 1978 NBA Draft and played for the Golden State Warriors and Indiana Pacers

The Filipino NBA player revealed that it was his dream of playing in the Big League. He also wants the Filipino youth of today to pursue their dream. The Filipino Hoop and Heritage Night will highlight talented young Filipino performers led by 9-year-old Filipina sensation Ciana Pelekai (America’s Got Talent) who will sing the National Anthem.

The evening will start with a meet and great reception from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the City View Terrace inside Staples Center. The meet and greet will be attended by Filipino Cultural performers, celebrities, NBA basketball legends, and Raymond Townsend himself. Attendees will have the opportunity for autographs and photos. Pre-game entertainment begins at 6:30 p.m., followed by tip-off at 7:30 p.m. Cultural performances will be presented during pre-game and at half-time.

Discount tickets will include a free collector’s edition Filipino Hoops and Heritage Night T-Shirt. Lower Level 100’s seating is discounted to $47 (Original price $75). Other discounted tickets are Lower Level 200 $35 (Original price $68) and Upper Level $15 (Original price $40). Buy your tickets at
www.nba.com/clippers/filipino or call (213) 763-4617

Clippers is the first ever NBA team of Los Angeles to reach out to the Filipino community. Townsend shared that a generous donation by the Clippers will be sent to the Typhoon relief effort in the Philippines. Clipper President Andy Roeser said this is a chance for Filipinos to demonstrate their passion for basketball as well as their passion for their culture.

Margeaux Gupilan cannot agree more. She proudly show her State Championship Ring on her finger to me after the presscon. After all, she is a promising Filipina Basketball point guard from Bellarmine Jefferson High. See you at Staples Center on December 5.