Senator Manny Pacquiao will get a chance to play a new basketball discipline come the 2020 Chooks-to-Go MPBL Lakan All-Star festivities on Thursday, February 13 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Before taking part in the Executive Game later in the day, the founder of the league will join the country's top young basketball stars in a Celebrity 3X3 game that will open the day.
Pacquiao will team up with 3x3 national team pool members Alvin Pasaol and Troy Rike to go along with 5-on-5 national team pool member Thirdy Ravena.
"When we first met late last year, Senator Manny asked me if he could play in our league Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3x3. We wanted to make it special for him that is why we tapped the top young players in the country to play in this exhibition contest," said Chooks-to-Go president Ronald Mascariñas.
Standing in Team Pacquiao's way in this game that has PHP 100,000 waiting for the winner and 50,000 for the loser is Team Kobe Paras.
Still recovering from a shoulder injury he sustained in the UAAP, the young Paras will sit on the sidelines as the special guest coach of his squad. Still, he formed a competitive squad.
Leading the charge for Team Paras are the country's top 3x3 player in Joshua Munzon and former FIBA 3X3 U-18 World Cuper in Juan Gomez de Liano. Completing the squad are Imus Bandera's Gerald Anderson and celebrity baller Marco Alcaraz.
Later in the day, the all-stars of the North and the South square off in a 3x3 All-Star game that has PHP 50,000 waiting for the victor.
Composing the North are Pasay's Jaypee Belencion, Bulacan's JR Alabanza, Valenzuela's Paulo Hubalde, and Manila's Aris Dionisio.
Zamboanga's Leo De Vera, Bacoor's Nick Demusis, Mindoro's Rodel Vaygan, and Imus' Jayjay Helterbrand form the South.
De Vera, Belencion and Alabanza are part of the 3x3 national team pool for the 2020 FIBA 3X3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
"Our players in the national team pool have been training hard since December and we needed to give them a breather. Hopefully, they enjoy this day of fun in the MPBL before getting back to work," added Mascariñas.