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Rising NBA star Adams, legend Theus to grace NBA 3X event

By Ivan Saldajeno

LOS BAÑOS--He may have not made it to the FIBA OQT last year, but New Zealand national player Steven Adams will still pay the Philippines a visit.

The Oklahoma City center's attendance will headline the NBA 3X Philippines tournament from July 15-23.

Drafted 12th overall by the Thunder in the 2013 NBA Draft, Adams averaged career-high numbers of 11.3 points, 7.7 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 1.1 steals a game alongside 1.0 block last year.

“I’m looking forward to meeting the Filipino fans and experiencing the country’s vibrant culture,” said Adams. “I’m also excited to work with the talented athletes from across the Philippines at NBA 3X.”

Joining him is NBA legend Reggie Theus, who starred for Chicago and Sacramento during the 80's.

Theus is well known as the only person 6-feet-7 or taller other than Magic Johnson to dish out 750 or more assists in a single NBA season.

However, he is set to get more Filipino fan love as he is set to coach Gilas player Kobe Paras at CSUN this upcoming US NCAA season.

“This will be my first trip to the Philippines, and I can’t wait to see the passion Filipinos have for the game of basketball,” said Theus. “With the inclusion of 3-on-3 basketball in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, NBA 3X is a testament to the growth and popularity of the game internationally.”

The NBA 3X tournament will feature the boys U13 and U18, the boys and girls U16, and the men's and women's open divisions alongside a special tournament for celebrities and another tournament for the employees and distributors of the NBA 3X's new primary sponsor, AXA.

“We are excited to partner with NBA 3X Philippines and see this as a platform to elevate 3-on-3 basketball in the country,” said Raul Hora, President and CEO of AXA Philippines.

The NBA 3X begins with the preliminary stages on July 15-16 at the Don Bosco campus in Makati with the best teams from the opening rounds heading to the playoffs at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall the following weekend.

Interested teams can join the tournament by logging on to nba3x.com/philippines.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno