Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson said he plans to play for the Philippines national team in 2016, as it tries to qualify for the Rio Olympics, according to Rappler.com.
Clarkson, who ranks second on the Lakers this season averaging 14.9 points per game, said he will play for the Philippines in a last-chance Olympic qualifying tournament in July if his schedule is free, according to the report.
Clarkson, whose mother is Filipino, did not play in the FIBA Asia Olympic qualifying tournament in September and October as it ran into the Lakers’ preseason training camp.
The Philippines, led by veteran NBA forward Andray Blatche, lost in the Oct. 3 final to China in the winner-goes-to-Rio tournament.
The Philippines nonetheless earned a spot in one of three, six-team, winner-goes-to-Rio qualifying tournaments in July and may even be selected in January to host one of those tournaments.
The Philippines last competed in basketball at the Olympics in 1972.