Back in 1987, Benjie Paras was a young 19-year-old Pinoy cager. He was a year past winning the UP Fighting Maroons’ first championship back then and had just won his only gold in the SEA Games.
Three decades later, another Paras bagged a SEA Games basketball gold: Benjie’s son, Manok ng Bayan Kobe, who served as a huge boost for Gilas Pilipinas in the 2017 edition of the regional meet held in Malaysia.
And for Benjie, now 48, he could not be prouder of his über-athletic, six-foot-six son, for being able to replicate one of his achievements in his illustrious 14-year career.
“Masaya of course na nagkaroon ng legacy yung Paras clan,” said the PBA legend proudly, after the Chooks to Go-hosted homecoming lunch for the Nationals, Thursday at the Marco Polo Ortigas in Pasig City.
Even the 19-year-old sensation, who flew back to the United States Thursday night to continue his studies in Cal State-Northridge, could attest to how proud his dad was after learning that he now has his own SEAG gold medal.
“Nung nanalo kami sa Malaysia, my dad called me right away. Nagbiro siya na (expletive), may medal na tayong gold,” shared Kobe with a grin. “It just feels good na nagawa ko yung nagawa niya noong age ko dati.”
The dad-and-son tandem are now SEA Games champions. But for Benjie, he still hopes that his son could emulate some of what he was able to do during his heyday. His wish, for now, is to see Kobe play in the 2018 Asian Games.
“Hopefully if ever he’s going to play in the Asian Games next year, [that would be] exactly (28) years also that we won the silver,” said the PBA’s only Rookie-MVP, recalling the 1990 Asiad in Beijing where hosts China won the gold.
Kayo mga Ka-Chooks, do you want Kobe to return for another stint with the Chooks-to-Go-backed Gilas Pilipinas?
#ManokNgBayan #ChooksToGold #LabanPilipinas