Jalen Green is drawing fans with his outstanding play after he led the United States to championship gold in the recently-concluded FIBA Under-17 World Cup.
The 6’5 Filipino-American sophomore sensation is expected to be a top college star and has also spoken fondly for the Filipino basketball scene.
Green averaged 15.7 points and 2.3 rebounds to lead the USA team to the title.
The highlights of his stellar run in the tournament came in the quarterfinal against Croatia and the semi-final against Canada, where he scored 27 and 25 points respectively.
The star from San Joaquin Memorial High School entered the Filipino consciousness when he led a team of Filipino-American high school players the “Fil-Am Sports” to the Elite Eight round of the SM-NBTC National Championships in March 2018.
He averaged 33 points, 7 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 1.5 assists during the memorable stint.
Footage of Green dunking over Ateneo High School’s 7’1 behemoth Kai Sotto when their teams met in the tournament also went viral.
He averaged 27.9 points, 7.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.6 steals as playing as a guard for San Joaquin in the 2017-2018 school year.
Some amateur basketball pundits have regarded Green as the top future prospect in the class of 2020.
The basketball community in the Philippines has also taken note of his string of successes.
— Eric Menk (@EMenk30) July 9, 2018
The 16-year old star traces his roots to Ilocos Sur where his mother’s family came from, he revealed in media interviews.
In an interview with ABS-CBN Sports in March 2018, Green remarked that he liked the physicality in Filipino competitive basketball.
Having a soft spot for the Philippines, Green has also expressed his interest in playing for the Gilas Pilipinas National Team, despite having already played for a U.S team.
Officers of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and Gilas have reciprocated Green’s interest in suiting up for the Philippines.
SBP executive director Sonny Barrios commented that there there was no harm in checking the rules when asked about Green.