ICYMI, Dwight Howard arrived in the Philippines last Sunday, January 7, 2024, together with naturalized Gilas Pilipinas option Andray Blatche, as they supplement the Strong Group squad come the 2024 Dubai International Basketball Championship. While several elite-level cagers prefer to keep their touchdown in the Philippines under wraps, the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Superman openly invited his Filipino faithful to his gate, embracing the country’s basketball-crazed atmosphere.
News of Howard’s acquisition came from a clip released by Senior lead NBA Insider for The Athletic and Stadium, Shams Charania, last January 2, 2024. Strong Group’s Head Coach Charles Tiu mentioned his interest in signing the eight-time All-Star and three-time Defensive Player of the Year for the tournament, “holding his breath” until Howard’s arrival, with nothing set in stone.
Five days following the formal announcement, Strong Group’s gargantuan core unites on Philippine soil, joining former Oklahoma City Thunder two-way guard Andre Roberson and 2021 Talk N’ Text import McKenzie Moore.
The 2024 Dubai International Basketball Championship simultaneously converges the Green Archer influence, tapping the University Athletics Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Champion Head Coach, Topex Robinson, together with Kevin Qiambao and Francis Escandor, and De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde’s Tony Ynot, Justine Sanchez, and Allen Liwag—uniting under the Tiu-Robinson mantle.