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Javi Gomez De Liaño turns pro, signs with Ibaraki Robots

Fresh from Gilas duties, Javi Gomez De Liaño will play in the B.League. Dennis Acosta (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—The Filipino invasion of the B.League continued on Monday as the Ibaraki Robots announced that they have acquired Javi Gomez De Liaño for the upcoming season.

According to Ibaraki, which was recently promoted to the first division, Gomez De Liaño has already signed his first professional contract.

"The contract period will be from July 1, 2021 as a special Asian quota," the Robots said in a statement.

In effect, Gomez De Liaño, a member of the 2018 University of the Philippines men's basketball team that made a return to the UAAP finals after a 32-year wait, has foregone his final year as a Fighting Maroon.

"I’d like to thank Coach Richard [Glesmann] and Robots management for giving me this opportunity of the lifetime. At the same time I can’t wait to play for you guys and meet the amazing community out there," Gomez De Liaño said.

The six-foot-five swingman, who was last seen playing for Gilas Pilipinas in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers, is set to become the third Filipino that will suit up in the B.League through the Asian Player Quota rule, joining younger brother Juan of Earthfriends Tokyo Z and Thirdy Ravena of the San-En NeoPhoenix.

The Shiga Lakestars earlier announced that they have recruited Kiefer Ravena, but his status on whether he will play there or not remains up in the air due to a contract dispute with the NLEX Road Warriors.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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